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" Shall I write only of the present times, and those wherein no other author 
has gone before me ? If so, I may probably give orTence to many, and please 
but few. However, this does not at all discourage me, for I want not sufficient 
resolution to bear testimony to the truth."— Pliny, B. V. L. 8. 









Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1851, by 


in the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the Eastern District of Penn- 



Much has been written in one place which would seem 
perhaps to belong to another head. Some things may appear 
irrelevant and unconnected, many valuable thoughts have, no 
doubt, been omitted, and some things said may be unprofitable. 

It may also be objected that there is a repetition of things 
or principles, and that there are unnecessary or too highly- 
coloi'ed descriptions. 

To all which it is answered that the subjects treated of in 
these chapters are in their nature somewhat desultory and fugi- 
tive, rather than systematic. 

That they are in some measure complicated with, instead of 
being independent of, and separated from, each other. 

Some repetition becomes unavoidable, because the same im- 
pulses run into, and stimulate different operations of the mind, 
and are, therefore, explanatory of the various movements and 
effects of different results. 

The consequences set forth are after all joint productions of 
many principles and causes combining to produce them. 

In treating of these various causes and secret motives, it 
becomes necessary, therefore, to bring in more than once the 
same causes and effects to show up the same aims and designs. 

All measures, be they good or be they bad, are brought about 
not by a single cause or act, but by a combination of circum- 
stances, or a series of acts and causes, all concurring to produce 


Truth will bear repetition, and often requires it to be heard 
and understood. 

The causes and acts which tend to destroy the peace and 
safety of society ought to be repeated often enough, and in 
language sufficiently loud and severe, to be heard and attended 
to, and understood by all those concerned. 

Repetition is also in lieu of emphasis, or in the nature of a 
stress laid upon any event or any danger. 

If, then, by repeating existing evils, and tracing out their 
secret and hidden causes, the attention of the credulous and 
the unwary shall be called to them, so as to enable them to 
avoid danger, infinite good will follow. 

It must also be remembered that the mental faculties, secret 
propensities, and animal passions of man are so blended and 
interwoven together, that it is sometimes difficult from his 
actions to detect the impulses, or nominate the emotions, by 
which he is incited or induced to act; and that he often acts 
under a combination of influences so hidden and mysterious as 
to baffle the most acute observation and profound experience. 

An abstract or theoretical dissertation, however profound and 
logical, will not expose his dark and lurking propensities. It 
can only be done by a careful scrutiny upon his sinister and 
unguarded developments. His craft and subtilty are so deep 
and refined that this precaution is necessary to detect him. 
He must be watched in the first impulse of reason and passion, 
puberty and maturity, through all the exigencies of life. 

It cannot be done by hypothesis, generalization, or abstract 

It must be done by the exposure of facts as tangible as 
physiological demonstrations made upon the vital sensations of 
the heart and the nerves. 

The mode adopted for the treatment of this subject is there- 
fore by chapters, under appropriate titles intended to define and 
indicate with graphic accuracy the moral and mental phases of 
his motives, impulses, and actions. 


The cases and examples employed by way of illustration are 
faithful representations of events and circumstances which have 
really occurred, unaided by embellishment or fiction. They 
furnish an imperfect glimpse at the revolving kaleidoscope of 
man's cunning devices and mysterious ways. 

While, for ages past, the popular arts and sciences, those 
which minister to the passions and cupidity of mankind, have 
been elaborately investigated and successfully explored, the 
illimitable and infinite occult mysteries of human nature, a 
thorough knowledge of which is so intimately essential to man's 
social safety and moral elevation, have nowhere been made the 
subject of a distinct philosophical disquisition. 

This undeniable omission of scientific research has left open 
and almost wholly unexplored a chasm in the dark mysteries of 
human nature, the neglect to examine into and penetrate which 
has come from a cowardly fear of self-exposure, or the egotism 
of self-sufficiency, self-knowledge, and self-complacency. 

No pretensions are here affected of a systematic analysis or 
scientific exposition of " Tlie Philosophy of Human Nature." 

Its magnitude and importance require the research and learn- 
ing of ages ; all that is here attempted is to put down faithfully 
a few suggestions, observations, and developments, the result of 
the close experience of one man's life of sixty years, which 
may serve perhaps as a beacon-light for the young, and an in- 
centive to the aged for their contributions to a work which shall 
successfully solve the dark and wonderful problems of the 
human heart. 




Education, -- -- - - -25 


Manners, - - - - - - - 66 


Mental Happiness, - - - - - - 91 


The Woof of Woe, - - - - - - 110 

Woman, .__---- 133 

Man and Woman, ------ 166 

Before Marriage, ------ 180 

After Marriage, ------ 200 

Separation, ------- 213 


Inflexible Prejudices, ..... 239 

Propensities, ...... 263 

Aristocracv, --.... 288 

Slavery, ----.._ 304 


Cities, ------- 337 

The Wen and the Knife, ----- 358 


Politics, - - - - - . - 381 

Requisites for Office, ..... 495 


Public Opinion, Character, Dueling, and Self-Defence, 415 

Governments, ...... 442 

Fanatics and Factions, ..... 4^9 


Page 35, line 10, read are instead of "is." 

1826 instead of " 1846." 

1826, page 414, instead of " 1825, page 4-6 " 
an hypothesis, instead of " a hypothesis." 
fugitive, instead of " fungative.' - 
work, instead of " worth." 
are, instead of " is." 
flexanimus, instead of " flexanimis." 
the second, third, and fourth paragraphs are ex- 
tracts, and not quotations. 
malum instead of " malus." 
10, omit the word "not. 1 " 

read " Conscia mens recti fama mendacia ritlet" for the 
last line. 

































Education extensive in U. S. — will test the question — if it improves the 
morals and mind — If Napoleon had not been educated, query — Quacks, 
pettifoggers, &c. — But few minds strong enough for professors — Genius 
will rise — Education does not make mind — Too much expected from 
education — Ignorant parents cannot educate their children — Army and 
navy; examination periodically — Should be so with all professors, judges, 
&c. — But opposite extreme to be avoided — Poor schools like poor re- 
lief, for bread, &c. ; food necessary, &c. — Schooling a mere bounty — 
Factionists make it general to flatter the poor — Should be given to 
poor only ; and to them to read and write, and then learned trades, &c. — 
Takes time; they should be at trades, kc. — Great men self-educated — 
Morals — Mind — Passions — Mental Sensation — Will — Impulse — Deprav- 
ity — Millions ignorant of their own science — Man prone to idle- 
ness — Proper education useful — If all from 5 to 21 are trained in school, 
they cannot make livings — To make them work all this time is to be 
drudges — Should be practical, and before 21 — Apt to deteriorate after 
this — There should not be too many in the professions — Points dis- 
cussed, viz. 1. — No power to tax, but to school poor — the law. 2. — If 
beyond 13, females, and 14 males. 3. — If for any, even below this, but 
poor. 4. — Effect of education, all from 5 to 21. 5. — Whether, if up to 
21, improves the morals. 6. — If an education given by a general police 
regulation is not enough. Result of this if enforced properly : 1. — 
Streets clear of vagabonds. 2. — Property, person, and life secured. 3.— 
Gaming houses, &c, stopped. 4. — The bad would have no encour- 
agement. 5. — All that is robbed, &c, would be saved. 6. — Myriads 
would reform. — Childhood, time for education and restraint, indulged — 
Fine clothes, with pocket money — No boys now ; all are men — Ap- 
prentices refractory — Swarms of half learned in all employments — 
Such of both sexes unlit for matrimony, and rush on it — Females taught 
music and frivolities, not necessary things — The entire system of educa- 


tion involves life from its germ to the grave — Religion the true founda- 
tion of all education — Toleration of religion in the United States, infi- 
nite good. 

Education, that which we understand by schooling, is now 
being fully developed in the United States upon a much 
broader and more enlightened scale than it has before been 

This will test the proposition whether the intellectual light 
obtained by a knowledge of the rudiments of learning will 
improve both the morals and understanding, and arm the mind 
against the seductions of sin and ignorance. 

No man in the United States can plead the want of means 
to learn how to read and study for himself. 

The Sunday Schools, Free Schools, and other schools, now 
embrace almost the entire infant population, and the next age 
will, perhaps, show a race of men superior in intelligence to any 
other nation in the world. 

It must be remembered that this light, like the rain from 
Heaven, falls upon the just and the unjust, fructifying and nour- 
ishing the rank and poisonous weeds as well as the tender 

Whether this mental amelioration and education of the poor, 
who are well disposed, will not be counterbalanced by the ad- 
vantages in like manner given to the wicked and depraved in 
better fitting them for adroit perpetrations, remains to be seen. 

There is at this time a very great number of educated and 
artful knaves in the United States, who hold positions and 
places of influence and power, and are employed in, and pre- 
pared for schemes and plots involving the most pernicious and 
dangerous consequences to the private pursuits and public wel- 
fare of the people. 

Knowledge is power to the bad as well as to the good. 

If Napoleon had never known how to read, the career of his 
great genius might have been confined to piratical cruises on 
the Levant. By learning and knowledge he discovered his 
mind to be far above the masses. By these means he gained 
confidence in himself, and in the name of Destiny and Beason 
skilfully buccaneered upon the lives and treasures of a con- 

If the subjects of his venal ambition had been as cnlight- 
ened us the inhabitants of the North American States now arc, 


he might have shrunk from, or have heen foiled in his experi- 

Knowledge cannot be instilled into, or made to improve, or 
give additional strength to a weak mind — on the contrary it 
inflates the vain, magnifies fools and dunces, and misleads the 

A mere quack can be shunned, but it is extremely difficult 
to guard against the imposition of authorized and plausible 

The American experiment of graduating ignorant clowns, 
and admitting to the practice as doctors and lawyers, un- 
schooled and lazy mechanics and presumptuous and broken- 
down hostlers and peddlers, and dubbing the highest collegiate 
degrees for favor and money on every audacious pretender, 
has turned loose upon society an army of professional vaga- 
bonds, who have become a common and notorious nuisance to 
men of education and to the country at large. 

Unless oppressed, genius will have light, and to a searching 
and perspicuous intellect, knowledge then becomes power. 

If the lion knew his strength, he would not suffer himself to 
be caged. 

It is a momentous question big with curious reflections. 

The United States will soon double the force of the great 
political maxim, that "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty," 
for the enemies of its free institutions, by this system of edu- 
cation, are taught to feel and use their power forbad as well as 
for honest purposes. 

Perhaps there is too much expected from education. All 
men know by observation and experience, that honest labor is 
productive, and hence some are led to infer that an education 
must produce similar results. This would seem to be the con- 
clusion by which almost every mechanic and tradesman is 
governed, who, if able, most resolutely educate and supply all 
their sons, however numerous, with learned professions. 

Nothing can be more absurd. Being uneducated themselves, 
they do not know how to superintend the education of their 
children, and are therefore imposed upon by their being but 
half learned. 

The parents have no appropriate means of starting their 
sons in their own professions with the advantages of their ex- 
perience, credit, character and customers, as they could do if 
their boys were brought up for and began their father's busi- 


ness. And hence such candidates for patronage are compelled 
to commence life without any paternal or family patronage, to 
waste years in painful struggles to obtain a foothold, and often 
fail in the severe and trying experiment. 

There is no objection to the education of every man, but the 
error lies in expecting too much from it, in the supposition 
that it can make mind or create genius, whereas it takes from 
a boy's early years the time which should be used for acquiring 
a practical knowledge of some employment upon which he can 
depend for subsistence, instead of keeping him at schools where 
he gets nothing but habits of distaste for honest labor. 

There is not one man in ten thousand who has vigor of in- 
tellect sufficient for a learned profession. Give children suffi- 
cient schooling suited for their intended occupations, and set 
them to work. If they have mental faculties above this 
sphere, their indications of thought and mind will soon be de- 
veloped. They will be quiet students, and not brawling dan- 
dies; obedient and dutiful pupils; and grateful and respectful 
to their parents, instead of being blasphemers, rebellious, and 

The community suffers the most incredible and serious inju- 
ries by the ignorance and negligence of persons engaged in 
scientific pursuits and in the professions. 

Apothecaries, chemists, teachers, doctors, lawyers, public 
officers, by favor, presumption, and trick, are % permitted to 
begin without adequate preparation. They, therefore, abandon 
all research and improvement, and depend upon the plausibili- 
ties of address and speech for success. 

In the army and navy, besides an ascertained previous quali- 
fication, there is a board of aged and experienced gentlemen, 
who, at short intervals, thoroughly examine the surgeons and 
other officers. Their duties are placed upon the footing of col- 
legiate labor, in which the course of studies is for life, and in 
which there must be unremitted research, and conclusive evi- 
dence of improvement and progress, or the pupil is put back or 

This wholesome discipline should be rigidly applied to all 
civil, as wadl as military and naval functionaries. Perhaps 
there is more reason for it in the former than with the latter 
class of individuals. 

There can be no objection to it on the score of disrespect. 
Gentlemen of moral rank and eminence in their professions 


could be appointed for the examinations, of whose good opinion 
any one might be proud. If the result is favorable, it will in- 
crease public confidence, and swell the reputation of the ex- 
amined ; and if it is unfavorable, they should be dismissed, and 
the people undeceived. No harm, and much good may come 
from it. 

The country is overrun with persons in all the relations re- 
ferred to, who never read or study, or keep up with the improve- 
ment and progress of the age. Of doctors and apothecaries, 
who even lose their recollection of technical words ; of lawyers, 
who have no books, and spend their time in debauchery ; of 
judges, who read nothing but newspapers ; who loaf, lounge, 
eat, drink, and smoke perpetually ; dabble in politics ; deal in 
lots, stocks, and lottery policies. 

The baker's bread and the butcher's meat can be tested by 
every one ; but the ability to do this does not apply to, and ut- 
terly fails in everything which depends upon art and science. 
The one is palpable to the senses ; and the other is obscured 
by deep and hidden mysteries. 

Knowledge and learning may be assumed with impunity by 
the crafty knave to the ignorant and unskilled, who should be 
indemnified against such frauds by certain and abundant scru- 

Nostrums, astrologers, pedagogues, demagogues, quack doctors, 
pettifogging lawyers, corrupt and ignorant judges, to which add 
dram-shops, monopolies, and gambling, have defiled the morals, 
fed upon the earnings, and tortured and slaughtered the people 
for ages. 

It is now high time that the good sense of mankind should 
banish them forever from the face of the earth, and that intel- 
lect, genius, true learning, industry, and integrity should every- 
where prevail. 

In the measures used to prevent these abuses, care should be 
taken not to run into the opposite extreme, by educating indis- 
criminately the whole mass of society. They should not all of 
them be educated as scholars ; some arc required to do the 
necessary work of society ; and there is but a very small propor- 
tion who are capable of receiving an education in the arts and 
sciences, and who have capacities above the dependent occupa- 
tions of life. 

The poor school system is carried to an absurd extreme in 
some places. The law as it originally was, and really should 



be, is, that « the poor shall be taught gratis:" that is, taught 
to read and write. This is all that was ever taught in the 
alms-houses, or to the out-door poor in any other country, or in 
this country, uutil misguided philanthropists and cunning poli- 
ticians contrived the present scheme. 

Schooling to the poor is a public charity, as much as the sup- 
ply to them of victuals. The law puts them upon the same 
footing. It is like all other pauper bounty. 

The primary rules of organized society did not require from 
the public any pauper liability, except for animal necessities. 
There was no moral or mental aid embraced in this public duty. 
The public has added their agreement as is above recited. This 
is a gratuity, not a duty, and it is fraudulent to suffer its per- 
version to the accommodation of individual advantage, or to 
theoretical notions of general philanthropy. 

Because the people of Pennsylvania, for example, gratui- 
tously consent to tax themselves for the cost of teaching the 
poor, it does not follow that they shall be forced to support 
academics and colleges, where the arts and sciences are taught 
to all gratis. And that, by way of excuse for this favor, shall 
they be told that they also may send their children to these 
schools, and that they should do so to remove from the poor 
children the stigma of pauperism. 

There is no more reason why this benevolence should apply to 
the pauper relief, granted for the children of the poor to be 
taught, than for the children of the poor to be fed. 

The reason is not so strong for the first as the last case, be- 
cause to feed the poor is necessary, to teach them is a gratuity. 
A duty may, but a favor may not be demanded. A duty with 
all its incidents can be claimed and used as a matter of right, 
a gratuity cannot be claimed with allowances or enlargements. 

The one carries with it appurtenances, the other is confined 
and limited to its literal stint. 

The practical character of this theory would seem to be, that 
the public being bound to feed the poor, the leaders of factions 
who seek popularity by sinister pretensions of benevolence for 
the poor, by the apathy of the people, get the power into their 
own hands, of raising and using the money for this object, out of 
those who earn and save it, with which they build and furnish 
for themselves gorgeous palaces, and feed upon viands more 
sumptuous than those whose money pays the cost can afford to 
accommodate themselves with. 


Shall they be told to join this fraudulently got-up banquet, 
this pic-nic of poachers, so that by kind philanthropy the pauper 
pride of those they feed shall be soothed and compromised? 

What the public has agreed to do let it be done. But because 
they feed the poor gratis, it does not follow that they are bound 
to support them in affluence. And, because they have agreed 
to teach their children gratis, they are not bound to submit to 
the preposterous fraud of supporting colleges for the education 
of the poor, and to be told by these very paupers and their in- 
fatuated advocates, that the door is open for all children to walk 
into and be taught. It is an artful subterfuge for popular 

Teaching the poor how to read, and write and reckon, is all 
that was ever expected. These, including the first four or five 
rules of arithmetic, has been all that for ages has been cove- 
nanted for by indentures of apprenticeship; all that is necessary 
for their mental instruction and to enable them to transact their 
private affairs, and all that is ever required for any child who is 
not to be prepared for a learned profession or for some scientific 
pursuit; all that is necessary, and certainly all that is reasonable 
to require the public to pay for in any country, much more in 
the United States, wher,e every man who has his health should 
be able by his own earnings to educate his children, without 
imposing upon the public, or degrading his offspring by pauper- 
ism, for their schooling any more than for their victuals or 

There is no difference in this respect between provisions and 
schooling, and no one with means who has the spirit of a man, 
would humiliate himself by sending his child to a free school 
any more than he would send him to a soup-house to get his 
dinner gratis. 

By this system, children are too often kept at these schools, 
without any definite object as to their subsequent employment, 
and for the mere accommodation of ignorant and capricious pa- 
rents, who are too stupid and vain to set their children at useful 
labor, by which they can earn honest livings and lay the founda- 
tions for future habits of industry. 

In the devise made by Stephen Grirard, for the education of 
lt poor orphans" provision is expressly made for their prepara- 
tion "for some suitable occupation" and it is given upon the ex- 
press condition : That at fourteen or eighteen years of age, "they 
shall be bound out to learn agriculture, mechanical trades, &c' x 


The present system has a tendency to make boys profligate, 
lazy and insolent, and imposes millions of taxes upon the com- 
munity in the name of charity, which is not so. 

Because a boy is destitute of a dinner, it does not follow that 
he is to be fed all his life. That having no clothes or home, he 
is to be clothed and accommodated with board and lodging for 
years, or that while he receives this aid he is to have it better 
than those who work to give it to him, and that if he does not 
know how to read, that his neighbors shall work and earn money 
to school him longer and better than they school their own 
children, or shall pay to keep him in a college, with expensive 
teachers and costly appliances for years, to acquire a profession 
which he may or may not pursue as he chooses, or which he 
may not have brains enough to follow, when the persons from 
whom this tax is impertinently extorted cannot afford thus to 
teach their own children. 

A common school for all to go to can no more be forced upon 
the people of the United States, than a common church. 

The poor school is a part of the pauper law to give the child- 
ren of the poor necessary mental as well as bodily food. 

What schooling is necessary is just so much as is required 
to enable them to read and write, together with the first rudi- 
ments of grammar, geography and arithmetic. 

After this they can read and study the Scriptures, and all 
other books for themselves if they choose and have the dispo- 
sition to do so. 

All this is proper, just and honorable. It is the benignant 
feeling of parental kindness, the benevolent spirit of aid and 
protection by a wise and righteous government. 

Beyond this limit the tax for, and the expenses of a free 
school should not go. None but the children of persons too 
poor to pay for schooling should go to such a school, and none 
but pauper children can go there without a gross fraud upon 
the public. 

If a boy has genius and is taught how to read and write, he 
will not be held in. His mind will vault up into the spheres of 

He will acquire learning without being made a pauper to 
obtain it. 

There are more men perhaps in the United States, who have 
been educated in the schools in proportion to the number of 
their inhabitants, than in any other country. And notwith- 


standing this, almost all of their distinguished statesmen, jurists, 
and learned men are self-taught. 

The education of children beyond the first elements, unless 
it be for some defined pursuit, such as navigation, surveying, 
mechanics, &c, and for the mere purpose of education, is wholly 
unnecessary. It cannot make mind any more than light can 
make the blind see. If the student be a dunce, education is 
wasted on him, and if he be not a fool, and does not use it for 
some useful and appropriate purpose, it is sure to do him more 
harm than good. 

It wastes all that part of his life in which habits of industry 
are formed, gives him a disrelish and contempt for labor, and 
makes him an idle leech, neither an independent, respectable 
working man, nor with the caste which is looked for in one who 
has been educated. He is generally a drone or a vagabond. 

" There is, perhaps, no trade or profession existing in which 
there is so much quackery, so much ignorance of the scientific 
principles, and of the history of their own art, with respect to 
its resources and extent, as is to be met with amongst mechan- 
ical projectors. The self-constituted engineer, dazzled with the 
beauty of some perhaps really original contrivance, assumes 
his new profession with as little suspicion that previous instruc- 
tion, that thought and painful labor, are necessary to its suc- 
cessful exercise, as does the statesman or the senator. Much 
of this false confidence arises from the improper estimate which 
is entertained of the difficulty of invention in mechanics; and 
it is of great importance to the individuals and to the families 
of those who are thus led away from more suitable pursuits, 
the dupes of their own ingenuity and of the popular voice, to 
convince both them and the public that the power of making 
new mechanical combinations is a possession common to a mul- 
titude of minds, and that it by no means requires talents of 
the highest order. It is still more important that they should 
be convinced that the great merit, and the great success, of 
those who have attained to eminence in such matters, was al- 
most entirely due to the unremitted perseverance with which 
they concentrated upon the successful invention the skill and 
knowledge which years of study had matured." — Babbage's 
Economy of Manufactures, p. 212-13. 

Man has ever shown an irrestrainable propensity for abori- 
ginal idleness, and lawless liberty. He rebels against the 


sober dictates of wisdom, and reluctantly yields to the con- 
straints of government. 

It is by the force of education that these propensities are 
reformed; it is an arduous and painful task; it requires the 
appropriate knowledge obtained in schools, practical instruction 
in the business to be pursued for a living in after life, temper- 
ance and patient industry. 

Without these elements of knowledge and self-constraint, 
there can be no useful education. The work will be but half 
done, and the pupil will enter life just so far unprepared for its 
competitions, as the advantages which those who are prepared 
will have over him. 

To train all men from five to twenty- one years of age, in 
school, where the precepts of morality and self-constraint only 
are taught, however refined in virtue, and purified by religion, 
they would be altogether helpless to themselves, and useless to 

To give them skill in the mere manual pursuits of life would 
produce a race of ignorant, sordid serfs; and to bring them all 
up in schools, would turn them out to scramble amongst each 
other for the common wants of life, amidst perilous excitements 
and crime. 

The theory which involves the exclusive application of either 
of these plans of education is fallacious and destructive. A 
mere scholar, a mere mechanic, a mere tradesman, or husband- 
man, at twenty-one years of age, without any knowledge or 
mental light, except what he obtains in acquiring these arts, is 
but half, perhaps not one-third or one-fourth educated. 

The advocates for the exclusive use of any one of these 
schemes are manifestly in error. They betray a want of that 
discrimination which is derived from the rudiments of a sound 
and general education ; and obviously show, that they are in- 
fluenced by the prejudices of some one only of these three 
modes of education, or that they have not been trained in the 
wholesome discipline of any school. 

Twenty-one years is the average life of man. All this time 
is occupied by the precarious and uncertain probations of mi- 
nority for helpless infancy, and mental and animal growth. In 
this period the habits and character are inflexibly established, 
and are but seldom changed or modified in after-life. 

To press upon the mind before maturity, all the instruction 


and discipline it is able to receive, is of vital importance. It 
will be more apt to degenerate than improve afterwards. We 
soon contrive substitutes for labor and patient toil. If illite- 
rate, we are too inert to learn ; make a mark for a signature ; 
blunder through life in mental darkness ; with ample time and 
means for research ; and excuse our ignorance by affectations of 
contempt for learning. 

So that the imperious occasions for a suitable and appro- 
priate education, in all these fundamental branches of know- 
ledge, within the age of twenty-one years, is manifest. They 
must be obtained within that period of life, or they will, per- 
haps, never be acquired. The exceptions to this rule are so 
rare, and the facility with which genius seems to overcome the 
obstacles of ignorance and condition are so surprising, that 
the mind is led to the conclusion that there are but few who 
have faculties for advancement. If this be not a speculation ; 
if it is a fact that there are no mental energies capable of pro-' 
gross and improvement, except those which exhibit these pow- 
ers, the picture of human weakness and debility is humiliating, 
and the efforts of education are wasted upon ninety out of every 
hundred. There are, perhaps, more solid grounds for this con- 
clusion to rest on than the vanity of man, and the reciproca- 
tions of complacency which he is obliged to make, will con- 
cede. A candid and thorough scrutiny of this interesting 
subject might be regarded as invidious and uncharitable, but 
its statistics would be as curious as its results would be con- 
founding to the vapid pride of the pompous majority. 

Distinctions which are not founded in the elements and the 
useful fruits of education, but which rest upon their profession 
only, are artificial and pernicious. They inflate and puff up 
the pride, and encourage their possessors to insult modest 
worth. They pervert the legitimate purposes of knowledge and 
refinement from useful benevolence to selfish ostentation. 
Education should imbue the heart with humility, instead of 
arrogance. The latter too often characterizes the conduct of 
those who have graduated in the schools. 

The ignorance and vanity of parents sometimes induce them 
to heap upon their children classical educations, which they 
have no mental powers to use. To this they add a learned 
profession, and start them out into the world to be pitied and 
jeered at. A day laborer holds an elevated rank compared 
with such a being. 


If, to gratify his ignorance and vanity, a parent sees fit to 
spoil his own offspring, and render them ridiculous, there is no 
remedy for the evil ; but this responsibility should not be as- 
sumed by the public. The risk is inevitable and large, if every 
individual between five and twenty-one years of age is invited 
into the free schools and colleges to be educated at the public 

There should be a reasonable certainty that the tree is of a 
stock that has borne good fruit, before the time and expense of 
its nursing and growth are incurred. Not that the same sort 
of tree has borne fruit, but that the tree from which that seed 
or root comes, has borne good fruit. 

If it never has borne good fruit, it never will. There is 
many a scrubby bush and tree of the same name, which, if 
pruned, will spread and swell most proudly, but will bear no 

The mental powers are like the moral propensities. If there 
is a natural predominance for evil, no act of goodness will ever 
be done, but from sinister motives ; and if there be not suffi- 
cient intellectual taste and strength to grasp and control the 
engines of knowledge and science, no teaching or instruction 
will infuse these facilities into the mind. 

These distinguishing great leading traits of human charac- 
ter are as certain and unerring with men as they are with 

There is a race of donkeys with all classes of animals, for 
which no extra trappings or training was ever intended. The 
drollery of their hideous heads and slinking tails, their goblin 
ears, unearthly sounds, is always magnified in an exact ratio 
to their affectations of the rampant steed. 

Universal education at the public expense is unlawful beyond 
its first rudiments for the purposes of business, and for those who 
are not designed for the professions, it is useless. An exami- 
nation of this subject is proposed to be made as follows: — 

1. The power to compel the people to pay taxes, for the 
schooling of any but indigent orphans, and the children of those 
who are unable to pay for their schooling. 

2. Whether this can be enforced for their schooling beyond 
the age of thirteen for girls, and fourteen for boys; or at such 
age as they may be strong enough to be put to trades. 

3. Whether this can be enforced for the schooling of children 
who are not poor, of any age. 


4. The social or political consequences of the schooling of all 
persons, from five to twenty-one years of age, and turning thern 
upon the world in multitudes, for employment and subsistence 
as mere scholars. 

5. Whether schooling up to the age of twenty-one years 
improves the morals. 

6. And if the nature and influence of legitimate education 
in all times given to poor children by society, in their guardian- 
ship, discipline, and employment, with its correlative and inci- 
dental power over youth, ignorance, laziness and crime, is not 
abundantly sufficient. Take Pennsylvania as an example. 

The Constitution of Pennsylvania provides, Article VII. 
Sect. 1, viz: — 


"The Legislature shall provide by law for the establishment 
of schools throughout the State, in such manner that the poor 
may he taught gratis." 

"Article VII. Sect. 2. 
11 Of Seminaries of Learning. 

"The arts and sciences shall be promoted in one or mor e 
seminaries of learning." 

"The poor" are "to be taught gratis/' and "the arts and 
sciences shall be promoted." 

These objects are made the subject of two different and dis- 
tinct tides and articles in the Constitution, and are free from all 

The obvious meaning of the second section is, that "the arts 
and sciences shall be promoted ;" not that "the poor may be 
taught gratis." 

They do not mean the same thing, nor are they convertible 
terms. They are separate and distinct expressions, with inde- 
pendent objects, and different meanings and distinct designs. 

"Seminaries of learning and the promotion of the arts and 
sciences" are the expressions in some measure in contradistinc- 
tion to the language, "the poor may be taught gratis." By the 
first is meant endowments for buildings, and contributions for 
the pay and support of professors, and the supply of astronomi- 
cal and other scientific apparatus, such as are used in universities 
and colleges. 


This is what is meant by the words "the arts and sciences 
shall be promoted;" and this is not what is meant by the ex- 
pression, "the poor may he taught gratis." These last words 
cannot obtain or receive any such interpretation as that which 
obviously belongs to, and was intended by, the words ^ot the 
second section, " the promotion of the arts and sciences. 

"The establishment of schools in such manner that the poor 
may be taught gratis," cannot mean to teach them "the arts 
and sciences;" because "the arts and sciences" are not directed 
to be taught to "the poor," but they are directed to be "pro- 
moted," not "taught," "in one or more seminaries of learn tug. 

" The Legislature shall provide for the establishment of schools, 
that the poor may be taught gratis;" but they have no power 
given to them "to provide for the establishment of schools" for 
teaching "the arts and sciences" " in seminaries of learning,'' not 
to be "established" by them, but such as should be established 
by other means. 

"Taught" does not mean "promote;" "taught" is the parti- 
ciple passive of "teach," and means to "instruct;" "promote" 
means "to forward," "to advance," "to elevate," "to exalt," 
"to prefer." The definition of these words is wholly different, 
and their meanings in this Constitution are manifestly distinct, 
not only because they are not convertible terms, but because 
they have been used to express different objects, and are not 
used in the same sense. 

There is an obvious distinction between "instruction" and 
"forwarding, advancing, exalting, and preparing" persons 
after "instruction" has been given to them. The Legislature 
have power to "establish schools" for instructing of "the poor 
gratis;" but they have no power to "establish seminaries of 
/'■anting," of any description, to "teach the arts and sciences." 
Their authority in this is limited and confined to "forwarding, 
advancing, exalting, and preferring seminaries of learning ;" 
the "establishment" of which, and the teaching in which is to 
be managed by other persons, and not by the functionaries of 
the law. 

The Legislature of Pennsylvania have no moi'e power to establish 
seminaries of learning for teaching " the arts and sciences," than 
they have to "establish" a church; and any such establishment, 
such, for example, as the High-school at Philadelphia, where 
there is "instruction" given in "the arts and sciences" by per- 
sons appointed and paid under legislative direction, is as open 


and direct an infraction of the Constitution, as it would be to 
build a church, and appoint clergymen to preach, at the public 

The first movement made by this State, under the constitu- 
tional provisions before mentioned, was in 1809. Numerous 
grants and appropriations had, and since then have been made 
to " seminaries of learning for the promotion of the arts and 
sciences ;" but no steps had been taken to establish schools, " to 
teach the poor gratis," until that year. 

On the 4th of April, 1809, they passed an act (4 Smith's 
Laws, 73). It is intituled, "An act to provide for teaching 
the poor gratis." It requires township assessors "to ascertain 
the names of all the children between the ages of five and twelve, 
whose parents are unable to pay for their schooling ;" — who 
shall be informed that they may go to the private schools ; — 
the expenses to be paid by the County Commissioners, out of 
the public funds. 

On the 3d of March, 1818, they enacted a law (7 Smith's 
Laws, 52), reciting the words of the constitution, that " the 
poor may be taught gratis." It makes a school district of the 
city and a part of the county of Philadelphia, with a board of 
comptrollers, who are authorized, at the public expense, to 
build school houses, and establish schools for all the indigent 
orphan children; boys, between six and fourteen, and girls, 
between five and thirteen years of age," in said district ; — who 
are to be in like manner ascertained and notified : the schools 
to be managed at the discretion of the comptrollers, by such 
rules " as shall not be inconsistent vvith this act and the Consti- 

An act of March 27, 1819 (7 Sm. L., 206), provides, that 
four additional townships, which are named, may avail them- 
selves of the same advantages, for the schooling of their "poor 
children." These words, "poor children," are twice used in 
this act. 

In 1831 (7 Serg. & Kawle's Rep., 454), the S. C. recog- 
nized this restriction of free schooling to " the children of the 

In the same year, a commission of nine persons was raised 
by a resolution of the legislature (7 Sm. L., 451, N.), to in- 
vestigate the causes of pauperism in the county of Philadelphia, 
who reported at a subsequent session, that they were unable to 


prosecute these inquiries, for want of proper information from 
the guardians of the poor. 

On the 8th of April, 1846, a resolution was passed (Pam- 
phlet Laws, 1825-6, page 4-6), requiring the commissioners of 
the counties, to report annually to the Legislature " the number 
of poor children educated at the public expense." 

An act was passed June 13th, 1836 (Pamph. Laws, 1836, 
page 525), " To consolidate and amend the several acts relat- 
ing to a general system of education by common schools;" es- 
tablishing and organizing several other school districts, and 
providing for teachers, and taxes to support them; and several 
acts were theretofore, and afterwards passed, extending " free 
schools" to other parts of the State, and indicating rules of 
direction, management, &c. ; but no change was made in the 
character or qualification of the beneficiaries. 

On the 7th of April, 1849, an act was passed (Pamph. 
Laws, 1849, page 441), directing that " every township and 
borough shall form a common school district;" — organizing 
directors, with power to assess and levy taxes, build school- 
houses, and appoint teachers, "for the education of every indi- 
vidual beticeen the ages of five and twenty-one years, who may 
apply for admission." 

By this recital it will be seen, that the only constitutional 
provision, and which is restrictive of all legislative authority, 
is, "that the poor may be taught gratis." 

That the first enactment used the words, "children between 
the ages of five and twelve years, whose parents are unable to 
pay for their schooling." 

That the words in the next act are "for all the indigent 
orphan children, hoys between six and fourteen years, and girls 
between five and thirteen years of age." 

That the act next after this twice uses the words, " poor 

That the Supreme Court adopted this restrictive language of 
"the children of the poor." 

That in this connection, commissioners were directed to " in- 
vestigate the causes of pauperism ;" — and to report "the number 
of poor children educated at the public expense." 

And that no other interpretation or construction for fifty-nine 
years was put upon the words referred to in the Constitution, 
except to determine the ages within which "the poor may be 
taught gratis." 


That this was the definition of the word "poor" from the 
adoption of the constitution in 1790, retained as it was amended 
in 1838. That the understanding of the words, as to the cha- 
racter or description of " the poor" persons to " be taught gratis" 
was ascertained and determined in 1809, and repeated by the 
Legislature and the Supreme Court, for more than thirty years, 
to be " children under the age of thirteen and fourteen years ;" — 
and that all the legislative, judicial and popular interpretations 
of this "poor school" power has been limited to " children" 
within these ages, "whose parents are unable to pay for their 
schooling;" — until in 1849, when the constitution, and all 
former laws on this subject are abolished, without any authority 
or suggestion from the people; and a " common school" system 
is established throughout the State ; — $200,000 of the public 
moneys appropriated thereto, with directors and comptrollers, 
authorized to levy taxes for buying lands and building houses, 
for supporting a "sufficient number of schools, for the education 
of every individual between the ages of five and twenty-one 
years ;" and to confer academical degrees in the arts, as are now 
conferred by the University of Pennsylvania (Pamph. Laws, 
1836, 527), is a humiliating commentary on the republican pro- 
fessions of contempt for titles ! A more bold and arbitrary 
invasion of constitutional and judicial law was never perpetrated 
in a free country; and it may not excite the least surprise, that 
in less than seven months this luxuriant harvest-field should 
have stimulated the convocation of a self-constituted "national 

These schools, at which " the poor shall be taught gratis" 
have been made a pretext for great wrongs. 

The language is, " that the poor may be taught gratis." 

The argument that any other person but a pauper, is in- 
tended by the word "poor" is absurd; the word "teaching" 
in this connection, means what is understood by " victuals"'— 
that is, what is necessary, and no more. 

This construction has never been denied ; the effort has been 
to dodge and get round its truth by plausible and sympathetic 
appeals — to excuse, and not to justify the abuse. 

The test of the constitution for admission to these schools, to 
wit: " the poor ," is never put. 

The result of its application would be a laughable curiosity. 

The palpable inconsistency between the rule and the prac- 
tice will be shown. 



Take, for example, the county of Philadelphia for 1848. 
The children of all the paupers in the almshouse were with 
their parents, where they were kept at school, and bound out. 
None of these poor children were out of the almshouse. Only 
four hundred paupers received out-door aid from the Guardians 
of the Poor. These persons were all too old for, and they had 
no infant children. . 

During this same year there were kept in full operation in 
that county, two hundred and thirty-six free schools, to " teach 
the poor gratis," at which there was an aggregate number all 
the time of 40,290 scholars, at an outlay of $202,614 27, for 
school-houses, and an annual tax of $285,330 GO, for the ex- 
pense of " teaching the poor gratis" — more than all the other 
expenses of that county ! This will be found to be a scholar 
at an annual expense of more than $7 70 for each taxable in- 
habitant of the city of Philadelphia: and 4,538 scholars more 
than there were persons between the ages of five and twenty 
years, (35,752) by the census of 1841, in the city and county 
of Philadelphia. 

Pennsylvania and Philadelphia are taken for examples. The 
same rules, it will be seen, apply to all the States. 

No poor man ever asked for this ; it is asked for by the lazy 
and the dishonest, and the political knaves who cringe and 
court them. The poor are abundantly provided for, schooled 
and bound out to learn pursuits of honest industry ; they are 
not ignorant of their rights, or backward in demanding them ; 
they have had no occasion to complain; nor have they ever 
found fault with the benevolent solicitude bestowed by the Poor 
House Guardians upon their children. In the United States, 
this charity is performed with parental and religious fidelity; 
the tear and the lisp of the pauper child finds a passport to 
every heart. 

A member of the American Congress, some years since, in 
a debate upon, and in vindication of the free labor of the 
north, said : 

That a pauper boy in Pennsylvania had been schooled and 
bound out from an almshouse to a farmer, afterwards became'a 
school teacher, a surveyor, a prothonotary, a lawyer, a member 
and Speaker of the House of Representatives^ and that he then 
was the Attorney General of that State. 

It would have been superfluous if the speaker had added, 
that his pauper boy was a gentleman of the first rank, as a 


scholar and a jurist, and that he had no cause to feel ashamed 
of, nor was he ashamed of his origin. 

There is no lack of these pupils from the free schools of 
mind and industry, all over the country; none such from the 
free schools of extortion are now recollected. 

Perhaps the legal test, "children of the poor," would have 
shut out every individual of this 40,290 persons, who unlaw- 
fully used and consumed, within twelve months, in Philadelphia, 
more than half a million of the people's hard earnings, and 
every cent of which has heen extracted from them against law. 

There is no legislative vote, or order of any County Board, 
or Board of County Commissioners,, assessors or auditors, 
comptrollers or directors of schools — no affectations of benevo- 
lence or religion, that can sanction this flagrant disregard and 
violation of law. 

It is not authorized upon the ground of a general power to 
legislate for the public good; for their authority as to this is 
not left open, but restrained by the express words of the con- 

The notion that if this is not law, it should be, and that the 
end justifies the means, is a hypothesis as fallacious as it is 
audacious and false. 

And the position may be fairly put and maintained, that a 
common school, such as is now established in Pennsylvania, is 
in direct violation of the constitution of that State, and of the 
first elements of the free institutions of the United States; and 
that if any of the constitutions of the other States contain express 
clauses for their establishment, such as is in the Pennsylvania 
statutes, they are void. 

The States have all pledged themselves for the perpetual 
and inviolable toleration of religion. The constitution of the 
United States directs that " Congress shall make no law respect- 
ing an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise 

Congress has ruled that under this restriction it had no power 
to stop the Sunday Mails; and it necessarily follows, that any 
compulsory instruction, for improving or mending the morals, 
whether it be in school houses or meeting houses, is unlawful ; 
and that there is no authority in the United States to force a tax 
upon the people for the support of a common church, or a com- 
mon school, or any other place designed for moral instruction. 

They may have an implied power to protect and promote the 


arts and sciences, by patronizing seminaries where they are 
taught, as they have a right to protect and promote the purity 
of religion, by forbidding blaspheming; but they have no 
power to "make any establishment of religion," under the pretext 
of restraining profanity ; nor to establish any schools for the 
amelioration or reformation of human depravity, and mending 
the heart, under pretence of teaching the poor. 

They cannot compel any one to go to a church or a school ; 
they cannot force any one to listen to, or receive instruction, 
moral or religious; nor can they force the people to pay for its 
u establishment." 

There must be free toleration for both in the United States ; 
and no authority exists, by direct or indirect means, to exact 
one cent from any man, for any purpose or object in this re- 
spect, except for the promotion of "(hearts and sciences in sem- 
inaries," and " the schooling of the poor •" neither of which 
involves or embraces the abuse referred to. 

It is therefore clear that there is no constitutional power any- 
where given to tax the people for a common school for every 
individual from five to twenty-one years of age, for the mere 
purpose of improving their minds, without regard to their po- 
verty, and to be used as the common schools are now used, for 
the schooling of all persons indiscriminately between these ages. 

The health of the body is of as much importance to life, as 
the improvement of the mind. If a law was made providing 
for the establishment, at the public expense, of hospitals and 
conservatories for the accommodation of every sick and hungry 
individual, between the ages of five and twenty-one years, who 
may apply for admission, without any test of poverty, it would be 
as reasonable and just as this common school law, and would 
be no less in open contempt of the first elements of the social 

Both are agrarian, and both demand from society more than 
is necessary. This is all that the public is bound to do. They 
owe each other necessary support and protection, but no more. 
That which is not necessary is a luxury, which the public is 
not bound to pay for. Too much of this has been forced upon 
the people in other countries, and in the United States they 
have resolutely repudiated these oppressions. 

If it is proposed by schools, not named and defined, for the 
poor, up to thirteen or fourteen years of age, to improve or 
change the heart; if the real intention is to produce moral and 


religious influences and to make men better, then it is covertly 
and secretly designed for moral and religious instructions which 
cannot be suffered or allowed, directly or indirectly, in the 
United States. 

The people of the United States have unanimously and reso- 
lutely declared that they will not be forced to pay one cent for 
moral or religious instruction, in any form or shape ; and that 
this whole matter, in all its aspects and bearings, rests between 
God and the conscience, with which man has no concern, and 
shall not in any wise interfere or meddle. 

The efforts for legislative inquiry into the moral influences 
of universal education, it is seen, have failed. Chief Justice 
Tilghman, who was a wise judge, and a pious Christian, in the 
case referred to (7 Sergeant & Rawle's Reports), said, in 1821, 
twenty-two years after the experiment had been fairly tried in 
Philadelphia upon more than twenty thousand children, under 
thirteen and fourteen years of age, that "great sums had been 
expended" for the schools, "wirfwut producing the good that 
was expected." 

In 1821 there were two thousand nine hundred and sixty- 
nine, in 1849, forty thousand, and in 1850, fifty thousand 
children in the free schools of Philadelphia. More than half 
a million have had this light profusely shed upon them, at the 
cost of many millions of the hard earnings of the people; by 
this time facts and irrefragable statistics demonstrating its moral 
utility ought to be produced. 

It was hoped that this National Convention, composed of 
bishops, congressmen, and philanthropists, men of education, 
age, and wisdom, would have given the public this important 
information without being asked for it. 

They sat four days, no reports were made, but they referred 
everything suggested to committees Avho have not been heard 

Why did they omit to notice uncontradicted publications of 
great interest and magnitude? Should a National Convention 
shrink from research and scrutiny, and can it be credited, that 
this body of men might not have raised a committee, who in two 
days could have examined into, and made a full report upon 
the alleged advantages of this novel system of universal educa- 

They might have found in the "Boston Recorder" of 1844, 
this uncontradicted publication of facts : — 



"Within forty years commitments for crime have increased 
in England from 5,000 to 31,000;— more than sixfold; — four 
times faster than the increase of population. 

" In Scotland, the increase of crime in the same period has 
risen from 89 to 3,884; — forty-three fold; — and has advanced 
twenty-five times faster than the population. 

" That this prodigious increase has occurred during a period 
of almost unbroken peace, amid great improvements in criminal 
legislation, and prison discipline too, and notwithstanding un- 
paralleled efforts to diffuse education and religion, creates a pro- 
blem of no easy solution. 

" It is stated also, that the prevalence of crimes in England 
is fourteen times greater than in France; that the educated 
criminals are to the uneducated as two to one ; — facts like these 
demand thorough investigation : and strongly urge every pious 
mind to reflection and prayer." 

Is it possible that this warning was unknown to them ; and 
that they considered it wholly unnecessary to notice the wise 
and appropriate police regulations, which the law has furnished 
in all times for discipline and education ; — or that they did not 
recognize this wholesome and controlling power, by which juve- 
nile delinquency is effectually cut up by the roots, so that no 
minor shall be without custody, guardianship, and education, 
and no adult without constant employment ; and mobs, riots, 
torch-light processions, dram-shops, brothels, and gambling-hells 
wholly stopped? 

Instead of invoking these legitimate and efficient elements of 
police power and duty, acknowledging their strength and purity, 
and constituting them as the groundwork and platform, upon 
which all plans for education should rest; and making an effort 
to define, explain, and improve them; their whole time was 
wasted in popular professions of philanthropy, theoretical 
schemes for national display, and for coaxing young vagabonds 
from the street into the shades of science, music, and poetry; 
not a word of wholesome restraint and discipline, necessary 
labor, trades, diligence, industry, personal maintenance, and 
provision for children and old age. 

And although they were called on through the public press, 
to answer the following queries, not a word of reply is made, 
as to 


1. u Whether education improves the morals ; — if knowledge 
is not power for the bad, as well as the good; and if educa- 
tion does improve the heart ; — if this is in proportion to the 
advantages imparted to the intellect. 

2. " Whether, if education has produced mental improvement, 
it has not failed to improve the moral sense ; — and if, by im- 
parting knowledge, it does not create or substitute caution or 
craft, in place of ignorance and impulsive depravity, producing 
no regeneration, but only changing the open perpetrations of 
crime to covert and fashionable subtilty. 

3. "Whether free-school education has diminished pauper- 
ism, or convictions for crime ! !" 

Whatever future conventions in this respect may do to pro- 
mote the true cause of education, it cannot be denied, that this 
convention was composed of persons who are the special advocates 
of the present scheme of universal free-schooling, up to the age 
of twenty-one years, in place of the other essential branches of 
education and instruction; and that their zeal for the auxiliary 
aid of national power, in measures exclusively for domestic 
supervision and local expense ; is officious and uncalled for. 

There were a few sincere and pious men amongst them, as 
there always will be in every convocation professing to aid the 
public weal ; and there were a few such to the end, amidst the 
frauds that signalized the black and diabolical career of the 
chartered monopolies of 1886 and '40; in which more crime 
was committed than has been perpetrated by all the convicts 
in the United States since the Revolution. 

It is said that man is born in sin, and brought forth in ini- 
quity; that his moral conversion is as much a work of the 
Almighty, as his first creation; — that the secret exercises of 
the heart are exclusively between the conscience and God; — 
that man's wisdom tempts him to pride and vain-glory, and the 
invention of substitutes for the true causes of creation; that if 
there is any kind of education that will humble his stubborn 
spirit, it is religious instruction, which appeals to his affections; 
that the wise men of this world have not been examples of 
purity, and that millions have been regenerated under religious 
excitement, whose intellectual capacities were too weak to re- 
ceive or retain the rudiments of human knowledge; and that 
education, with all its best appointments, does not change the 
heart, much less its natural propensities. 

Who has forgotten the beautiful ode upon an Indian boy, 


who was taken from his dead mother's breast, reared and edu- 
cated with all the delicate refinements of civilized life, and gra- 
duated at the age of twenty, in one of the best universities of 
the country ? After, when, although he had never seen an In- 
dian, he embraced the feet of his pious benefactor, and obtain- 
ing leave to visit his native shades, was pursued, and found in 
the wigwam of his fungative ancestors, far in the recesses of the 
western wilderness, tattooed, and girdled with his wampum and 
tomahawk, revelling in transports amidst the savage nudity 
and aboriginal barbarism of his tribe. 

The heart is smitten down with humility and awe in the 
solemn contemplation of the high and unchanging law which 
fashions all things by an inscrutable will. 

It would seem, therefore, to follow, that the present system 
of free education will not secure the attainment of moral or 
religious reformation. There is no historical evidence that 
knowledge from schools, and in the sense here meant, ever pro- 
duced these results. It certainly will improve the mind, if 
judiciously blended with industrial instruction, but it does not 
control or constrain the conscience; it may make us more dis- 
creet and careful, but not more conscientious and pious; these 
reformations are accomplished by religious instructions. 

The actual wants and necessaries of life arc few and simple ; 
independent of the refinement suggested and made fashionable 
by civilized society, man would be as in the pastoral ages, liv- 
ing amidst the shades and rural employments of husbandry — 
his tent and mantle, his corn and cattle, would limit the entire 
range of his desires ; and these supplies would be so productive 
and abundant in proportion to his wants, that his cares and 
labor would be rich and romantic recreations. The present or- 
ganization of society has created wants so numerous and urgent, 
that the stock for supply is scarce and dear, and its procure- 
ment is made an object of secret and keen pursuit by millions, 
with the sharpest activity of wit, skill, labor, science, fraud, 
and violence. 

To supply these impending personal necessities is a formida- 
ble and appalling work, from which the heart shrinks back 
with fear and distrust, and to embark upon which, with any 
reasonable prospect of honorable and successful competition re- 
quires all the careful preparation which can be given to the 
physical and mental powers during the probation of minority. 

This knowledge is not obtained exclusively in schools or from 


books, but from domestic instruction. A child brought up in 
leisure, with all his wants supplied, may reach maturity in- 
deed — may pass through life with an utter ignorance of the 
urgent occasions and special qualifications required for obtain- 
ing his own subsistence. 

Personal exertions in this view, and as being essential to his 
animal existence, do not occur to his mind, and if wakened up 
to reality, he is confounded and amazed. 

The first mental step to be taken in life is to acquire a 
knowledge of this fact, and then to prepare and fit the mind 
and body for its practical execution : to teach man what it 
means, and how to do it — this is a matter of policy and neces- 
sity, not morality or religion. 

It is the first, most essential, and difficult task in life, to pre- 
pare and arm the mind and body both for this irksome and re- 
pugnant occupation, and for a patient and cheerful submission 
to the doom imposed upon man at his fall, that the ground 
should be cursed for his sake — that briers and thistles should 
grow up in his path, and that by the sweat of his face should 
he earn his bread. 

So imposing is the magnitude of these obstacles to the per- 
formance of the necessary labors of life, that one-half of the 
human race now live by trick and violence off of the rest, and 
their numbers would be fearfully augmented if it was not from 
the dread of punishment. Every one can readily see and 
■ clearly understand the pressing necessity for an accomplished 
and thorough preparation for this unavoidable and painful 
journey; but the faculty of intimately feeling and sufficiently 
appreciating the true nature and character of this mental exer- 
cise, is most difficult and perplexing. 

It would seem to require the necessary and practical presence 
of both the faculties of understanding and appreciating at the 
same time, to which must be added the simultaneous convic- 
tions of necessity, with a knowledge of the means for relief. 
The knowledge without the want, or the want without the 
knowledge, does not form this mental crisis ; they must concur, 
or there will be no pungent and perfect appreciation. 

This thought is beautifully illustrated by the thrilling reve- 
lations of David Copperfiald (Dickens) who, at the age of ten 
years, timid, feeble, afflicted, and crushed by adversity, is 
placed on the lowest form of Doctor Strong's school at Canter- 
bury, where the contrast between himself, and the advance- 


mcnt and rank of the head boy, Adams, struck his mind with 
dread. He felt most keenly the occasion for, but utterly de- 
spaired of ever obtaining the position then enjoyed by Adams. 

Passing up through all the courses of discipline and study, 
at seventeen, Adams is gone, and he has his place. lie looks 
down upon a crouching, timid child, sitting in painful bewilder- 
ment upon his first form; and with all his earnest aspiration 
for moral and Christian sympathy, he is utterly unable to rouse 
or excite it, even with the pungent recollections of his first 
dreary hours in that school; he cannot feel for and appreciate 
the fluttering emotions which swell the bosom of his humble 
successor. . 

The exercises of his understanding alone, and not his feelings, 
were moved. His early excitements were fear, hope, and help; 
he could understand and appreciate all these, even at the age of 
eight or ten, most eminently, when it was for himself; but when 
the exciting emergencies, that had roused into action these vivid 
impulses, had subsided, and the mind was relieved from the 
pressure of its own fears and wants — the feeling, the sympathy, 
the power of appreciation had vanished, and would not return. 
The feeling could be excited by urgencies for himself, but not 
for another. The ability to understand, and the wish to feel 
are clear and distinct; but the power to feel was gone: nothing 
but necessity will bring it into practical activity. 

It is the "art and mystery" to be learned by the apprentice 
in every trade and pursuit, the capacity to feel and do what 
cannot be explained; to appreciate his necessities, and the re- 
sponsibility of providing for them. This is the primary object 
of all instruction, without which man is pushed into a busy 
world, as helpless and useless as a naked and hungry infant 
would be amidst the frightful agitations of a flood or a con- 

, This intense sense of appreciating and blending knowledge, 
duty, necessity, and resolution, is alone the work of a practical 
education, and not of a school-house. The way to make good 
men is to make good boys. This is not to be done by coaxing 
them into schools, and keeping them there till they are twenty- 
one years old; teaching them the beauties of morality and the 
pursuits of religion: man must first be civilized and disciplined 
in the religion of supplying his own personal wants. To ac- 
complish this, take him in his crude condition from the nursery 
to the school-room, at the age of five or six years, and there 


commence the work of constraint, instruction, and discipline. 
Put no violence upon his mind or body; but force him to keep 
out of the streets, away from temptation, bad company, and evil 
examples; refresh him by wholesome keep and exercise; train 
him in the ways of mental reflection and useful knowledge; 
and by the time he is thirteen or fourteen years old, he will 
have acquired sufficient bodily and mental strength to be put 
into employment, by which he may learn some useful trade, gra- 
dually help to earn his own living, and assist to cheapen and 
increase, instead of enhancing the price, and diminishing the 
stock of public supply. 

Give him time to study and to go to school at least one quarter 
every winter, and an opportunity thoroughly to obtain all the 
science belonging to the occupation he is learning. By this 
course of education, up to the age of twenty-one, if there is 
not more bad than good in his breed and blood, he will turn 
out to be an intelligent, thinking, and more useful man than 
the enervated and pufFed-up graduate, who has occupied the 
whole of his minority in a free-school. If he has bad propen- 
sities, no education will ever change his nature; it may polish, 
and better fit him for trick and cunning; but it will not alter 
or reform the secret impulses of his heart. 

The first described graduate will carry his diploma in his 
mind, and can practically explain it; he will have a thoughtful, 
serious sense of the solemn fact that he now has to take care 
of and provide for himself in a world where millions struggle, 
in sharp and successful conflict, for all the gains and advantages 
in every pursuit of life. He will have learned the practical 
capacity of entering into, and taking his part, in this wide and 
open field of fearful strife; how, if he fails in one effort, to 
begin another; how to control his appetites, his pride, and his 
wants; how to persevere in toil, endure exposure, self-denial, 
and poverty, and patiently submit to reproach and persecution; 
how to maintain resolute and cheerful habits of industry, fru- 
gality, punctuality, and integrity in dealing; and how to be 
humble, thankful, and reverent to his Creator. 

The other will be wholly ignorant of, and suddenly surprised 
to" learn, that his pressing wants must be supplied by his own 
personal exertions; that he is hurried into a rude and selfish 
crowd, fiercely snatching from his grasp the necessaries of life; 
that he is jostled, pushed aside, and sneered at; that his help- 
less powers and unskilled wits will be overreached and baffled, 


by adroit ami dexterous adversaries; that he will not have 
courage, patience, practical experience, or physical strength, to 
hear the drudgeries of labor, and the severities of poverty; that 
the way men earn their livings, and get houses and lands, and 
property, is by incessant toil and sweating work ; that the em- 
ployments of the scholar are secondary and subsidiary to the 
creative pursuits and productive occupations of society; and 
that about one educated man to every fifty or one hundred is 
enough; that schooling up to twenty-one years of age does not 
make mind ; and that the practical education, here described, 
will most aptly fit the intellect, and prepare the genius for the 
profoundest researches of learning, knowledge, and science. 

All these mournful realities will fall like the mildew of des- 
pair upon his ardent and blighted hopes; too late, alas, too late, 
to stanch the gushing sorrows of his broken heart. 

The individual last described is the unfortunate graduate of 
a common school ; and if his compatriots are multiplied by the 
threatened follies of these times, the multitude will literally 
require the hospitals and ^conservatories before referred to; and 
there can be no more sure or certain course to make them ne- 
cessary than to encourage every individual, between the age of 
five and twenty-one years, to adopt the plan now proposed for 
spending his minority. 

The well educated and independent nobleman first described 
has had his preparations for an honorable and useful life 
wrought out under wholesome and benign institutions, ordained 
by the wisdom of ages, for the appropriate protection of the 
virtuous and industrious from the arts and wiles of the wicked 
and the lazy. 

The right of society to enforce a system of just and necessary 
police, upon all these domestic matters, lies with the primitive 
elements of the social compact. 

It has for its basis the common wants and rights of all men; 
it blends its benevolent reciprocalities with the most intimate 
necessities of life, and the brightest consolations of death • it 
lights up the rich and glorious sunbeams of time, and trims the 
golden lamp of eternity. 

We have no right to compel any one to go to church, or to 
receive religious instruction; this is a cardinal rule of primary 
and natural liberty, resting with the conscience, the infringe- 
ment of which has repeatedly bathed the world in tears and 
blood, and for (lie consecration of which the people of 'the 


United States have pledged themselves by mutual and eternal 
covenants. But, inasmuch as society is bound, by its social 
compact, for mutual protection and support, it has an indis- 
putable right to maintain a reciprocal security for these objects. 
It is bound to furnish a sufficient supply of food, raiment, and 
shelter, for its helpless and indigent members; and there is 
necessarily incident to this duty the correlative right to use and 
employ all lawful means for sustaining its power to fulfil 
that duty. 

These means are moral as well as physical. They involve 
the right to forbid and prevent all acts which have a tendency 
to weaken or destroy the functions required for the performance 
of this obligation. Hence the right, independent of all reli- 
gious considerations, to forbid and punish crimes; because, the 
direct consequences of crime are, to disturb and interrupt so- 
ciety, and thereby consume its time and diminish its moral 
powers and physical energies, and to wrong it out of its ac- 
quired means and stock for the public supply. 

Society has the right, and it is its duty to compel every 
one who is able to support himself to do so by some honest 
and useful employment; because, if he will not support him- 
self, his subsistence must come out of the earnings of those 
who do work; and every meal he eats diminishes the stock of 
subsistence, and increases the labor of those who earn and pro- 
duce the supply. 

Every man who does not earn his living, and is not fed and 
sustained off of the fruits or productive results of property pre- 
viously acquired, is subsisted by the public ; and this living off 
of others is accomplished by fraud, or obtained by bounty. If 
by trick or fraud, the act is criminal; the perpetrator is a 
swindler, and forfeits to the public his personal liberty, and is 
thereby rendered liable to its custody and control. 

If his support is obtained as charity, by reason of inability 
to support himself, the public has a right to obtain from him 
any rernuneratton he is able to give by his own labor ; and also 
to his personal custody, so as to make his support as cheap, and 
to render his labor as productive, as possible. 

The obligation is reciprocal; he is just as much bound to 
support himself, and to aid society in the support of others 
who are in want, as the public is bound to support him, if he is 
in want. He can force them to help him if in need, and they 
can compel him to forego a part, or the whole of this help, by 



his own labor or means, if he has them, for the benefit of 
others requiring assistance. The theory is plain and simple, 
and mutually equitable in all its bearings. 

The divisions of labor demanded by the wants and required 
for the comforts and refinements of society, put in requisition a 
wide range of official, professional, commercial, artistical, and 
other employments which add nothing to the productive stock. 

They minister to the wants and wishes rather than to the 
necessities of man, and cannot be dispensed with in any civil- 
ized community. The burthen is heavy on those who really 
create and produce the necessary supplies, and no means should 
be spared to lighten this load by a careful restriction of the 
numbers and emoluments of the supernumeraries. 

The prices of produce and necessary supplies increase just 
as the disproportions with these two classes prevail; and 
whenever the latter exceeds its due and appropriate weight, the 
effort is made to balance the scales by the artificial and fraud- 
ulent employment of false and spurious currencies. 

There cannot be too many farmers, growers of stock, miners, 
and manufacturers, nor too much encouragement given to their 
skill and industry; all this serves to increase and cheapen the 
necessaries of life ; but the accumulation of too many of those 
engaged in the non-productive employments of life decreases 
these productions and enhances their cost. 

The proposed free schools will have a tendency to produce 
these pernicious redundancies. The refinements of society 
sufficiently encourage their increase, and they should be pre- 
vented by restraining the propensity to educate too many and 
too much. 

Neither the public industry nor morals arc promoted by 
coaxing "easy individual," white and black, nude and female, 
to learn things which they will have no opportunity to practice, 
and place millions in dependence, and diminish the public facul- 
ties for produce and supply. 

To avert these calamities, the preventive policy of society 
should be enforced rigidly, without the least regard to miscon- 
ceived notions of delicacy, or the slightest relaxation of its 
universal application. 

Every habitation and person should be carefully registered 
and placed under the strictest surveillance of township and 
ward police. 

No honest man ever suffered in his reputation by a search 


warrant against himself or his property, and he will be proud 
aad rejoiced, if suspected or doubted, to establish his character 
for industry and integrity. 

It is not the virtuous and honorable -who murmur at this 
scrutiny; on the contrary, they invite and encourage these 
conservative measures of self-protection against drones and 

Magistrates and guardians of the poor have the power, and 
it is their duty, to arrest all beggars, gamblers, prostitutes, vaga- 
bonds, criminals; all lazy and able-bodied persons, who do 
not work ; all those who have secret means for subsistence ; — 
all paupers, destitute and neglected minors, and all persons of 
both sexes, and of all ages and nations, who are unable or un- 
willing to be employed in some honest calling. They have the 
power, and it is their duty, to enter into every house within 
their ward, parish, or township. 

They can go and search out the lawful means of subsistence 
of every person, whose conduct, condition, and behavior fur- 
nish reasonable ground to suspect that they do not live by 
honest means, and put them to the proof of a lawful livelihood; 
and if they are unwilling to vindicate themselves, and will not 
go to work at some proper employment, to commit them to prison 
as vagrants. If they are infirm and needy, to supply their 
wants, and give them shelter ; and if they are neglected minors, 
to support, protect, educate, and bind them out to good places. 

If these good and wholesome regulations were resolutely en- 
forced, and rigidly imposed upon a second offence, there would 
be the following reformations : — 

1. The streets would be clear of drunken, obscene, and re- 
volting exposures. 

2. The persons and property of society would be secure 
from violence and murder. 

3. All gambling-houses, grog-shops, and brothels would be 

4. The weak, ignorant, lazy, and proud would have no en- 
couragement or bad example. 

5. The millions of the hard earnings, of which the honest 
are plucked and filched, by profligate living, reckless dealing, 
gaming in stocks, trade, banks, monopolies, and swindling, 
would be saved ; and the boundless waste of money on pri- 
sons, refuges, almshouses, free schools, and corporations would 
also be saved, minus the inconsiderable outlay for bread and 


water to the rabble; and thousands of the pure and virtuous 
who are stricken down with poverty and disease, and who 
perish in want and obscurity, would be sought out, succored, 
comforted, aud saved. m 

6. And myriads, from this refreshing discipline, would ho- 
nestly reform, and go to work, or incontinently abscond to 
parts unknown ; or, if they remained, would be placed where 
their bad examples would not disturb the public, and they 
would be compelled to earn their own living. These whole- 
some elements of practical education and constraint would do 
more in one age to moralize, purify, refine, elevate, make 
learned, industrious, useful, rich, and religious, the young men 
and women, than all the free schools and their graduates can 
accomplish in fifty generations. 

There is no sphere so important for mental education as 
childhood and home. Domestic authority should be pure, but 
as unyielding as patriarchal power. The parent and the master 
should know that temperance in all things, rigid habits of 
cleanliness, economy, and self-denial, contentment, resigna- 
tion, and reverence of religion, are the essential elements of 
family-government, and he should never flinch from their un- 
conditional enforcement. 

Home is the only sphere where morals and religion are in- 
stilled into the heart. 

These duties are much neglected from ignorance and inex- 
cusable indulgence. Many who have had no opportunities of 
proper information marry early, become the heads of, and half 
bring up, families before they are themselves matured. Others 
yield to a spirit of censurable fondness for their offspring, 
which excludes all training, constraint, or instruction ; and 
others, from small beginnings, obtain wherewith for ease, and 
sometimes plenty, aspire to ape their more opulent neigh- 
bors in all their bad qualities, without having sense or discri- 
mination to imitate their commendable habits. 

They infer that, because they see the children of others 
dressed well, and in company, the way to make their own 
children genteel is to give them fine clothes and pocket money, 
and permit them to promenade the streets by day, and frequent 
places of amusement at night ; to slight and shun their equals, 
and obtrude themselves into the society of those they think 
genteel j to neglect their trades, business, and education ; and 
to cherish a contempt for labor, restraint, and religion. 


No respectable rich man would thus indulge his children ; 
and if he did, it would lead them to ruin. The instances of 
lads who, from these causes, have flunked at school, and from 
idleness and insubordination have left their trades, are almost 
without number. 

What comes of the boy who, from thirteen to twenty, has 
not had fastened upon his mind the rudiments of a sound edu- 
cation, well grounded knowledge of some trade or employment, 
with habits of cheerful industry and pure morals ? Nothing 
but ruin. 

It is the critical period when the character is formed, and if 
he does not obtain these advantages, and have them then firmly 
engrafted upon his nature, he will never get them, and there 
will be in their place, ignorance, presumption, vanity, idleness, 
impatience, and loose morals. 

This state of the propensities seeks kindred association, leaves 
the mind open to the influences of temptations for drinking, 
mixing with tavern haunters, fire companies, rowdies, becoming 
reckless, dissolute, and abandoned. 

The present system of domestic discipline is in all these re- 
spects radically wrong. Persons under age are too much in- 
dulged, and allowed to be in the streets by day and night, chew- 
ing tobacco, smoking cigars, drinking, swearing, and bullying 
about at corners, engine-houses, whooping in the theatres, shoot- 
ing and strolling over fields and meadows, treading down grass, 
and despoiling crops and gardens, and stealing fruit. 

It would seem as if there were no more boys or girls — that 
now they were all men and women. 

"Among all the changes that mark the nineteenth cen- 
tury, there is no other so great as that in the use of the word 
authority. In the time of our fathers, the power of authority 
was understood and felt — the authority of the God of the 
Bible, of the husband, the parent, the pastor, the teacher, the 
law. Now, the feeling is so different as to tempt us to believe 
that those perilous times are come when men shall be lovers of 
their own selves — covetous, boasters, proud blasphemers, diso- 
bedient to parents, heady, high-minded. Influence has come 
to be all — authority nothing. The son expects to govern the 
father — the daughter the mother. The rod of discipline is 
thrown away, and the scholars govern the schools. Even in 
the administration of justice, the same spirit leads jurors to foh 
low their own notions in spite of the law ; and the sacred bonds 


of matrimony arc coming in certain quarters to be despised. 
Established usage, which our fathers were wont to venerate, is 
almost regarded as proof of error. The lecturer would by no 
means be understood to say that there was no good connected 
with the movement. Doubtless some old things that were bad 
have been done away. But some laws there are that ought to 
be venerated. Woe to that spirit which rushes on in pursuit of 
its own devices, regardless of all ancient wisdom and of all 
legitimate authority." — Bishoji Hqpkms. 

Disobedience, rebellion, and laziness of apprentices are absurd- 
ly countenanced by the courts. For appropriate and necessary 
correction, judges and juries convict and punish masters for 
assaults and batteries. 

Kespcctable persons are deterred from taking apprentices, 
for, as soon as they have obtained a glimpse of their trades, the 
slightest pretext is made to vacate the indentures, or they are 
encouraged to abscond, cheat their masters out of the balance of 
their time, and set up for themselves, but half learned. 

Hence the swarms of lazy, extravagant, and bad workmen 
all over the country. They live too freely, and work too little: 
cannot make full wages, and strike, hold brawling meetings, 
and agitate the community with ridiculous clamors about the 
rich and the poor, liberty and oppression, freedom ; slavery, and 

The country is overrun with men and women at maturity, 
wholly unwilling and unqualified for the duties and responsi- 
bilities of life — not prepared or willing to creep before they 
walk; to begin as their parents started in the world, patiently, 
cheerfully, and thankfully ; to economize, save, and work hard, 
till, by persevering industry and frugality, they have obtained a 
foothold, and made for themselves a legitimate position in 

They revolt at these reasonable and necessary probations, 
covet the better condition of others, chafe their tempers by 
absurd projects and impracticable hopes, and impiously disdain 
their fate. They shift and shirk, and vacillate from place to 
place, soon fall off into settled habits of wickedness, and become 
confirmed in vice and sin. 

This neglect to educate and properly discipline the young 
prevents early and suitable marriages — the true and rational 
policy of life. 

Men and women are designed and fitted in all their sym- 


pathies for each other. They are never contented, unless 
honorably united, and it is a reproach to the community 
to allow any obstacles to this heaven-intended union of the 

Men, and sometimes women, carelessly and dissolutely 
brought up, have their loose propensities as well gratified by 
remaining single. They have no relish for the retirement and 
faith of marriage, and prefer the novelties of a single state. 

Neither man nor woman thus brought up is fit for the sober 
fidelities of matrimony. They are too fond of change and 
variety — not domestic, industrious, and saving. Their desire is 
for company and rounds of pleasure, instead of the settled 
quiet of home and labor. When such persons get married, or 
one such to a well brought up and properly disposed person, it 
generally turns out badly : for mutual fitness, industry, and 
economy are as essential elements of matrimony as chastity 
and truth. 

Humble men, who begin the world with limited intercourse 
with it, and whose children have been encouraged to press 
themselves into the company of those above them, adopt the 
mistaken notion that the criterion of respectability consists in 
showing off all these extravagancies, and thus acquire a 
familiarity with idleness, and the wanton use of luxuries in 
dress and pocket-money, which their actual means and circum- 
stances will not justify. 

Every nerve is strained to keep up these indulgences, to get 
a daughter off into what they suppose is a good marriage, or a 
son into a genteel position. 

From these and similar causes, prudent men are deterred 
from marriage, and women of similar discretion also act upon 
the same principle. 

Thousands of men and women, who but for this might have 
taken honorable caste in society, and been happy and honor- 
ably married, wander about unsettled, precarious in reputation, 
and wholly useless to themselves and society. 

The effect of this loose and reckless mode of education has 
been as pernicious to girls as boys. 

Girls are now but seldom taught to regard an entire practical 
knowledge of the details of housewifery as essential qualifications 
for a wife. On the contrary, they have masters for singing, 
music, dancing, French, &c. ; are encouraged to avoid house- 
work, and to consider it filthy and degrading to do it; and arc 


brought up wholly ignorant and averse to what they should 
know, and superficially instructed in that which is not only 
useless, but certain to make them lazy, haughty, fretful, and 
worthless. Music and dancing are not very often given to 
young females with any serious intention of qualifying them as 
teachers, nor with any view to improve the taste or refine the 
judgment, and they are not so used, hut they are often and very 
erroneously used to attract the attention of giddy young men 
who place no value on them. 

Not one woman in ten thousand adopts music or dancing for 
a living, or shows that her manners, her mind, or her heart has 
been improved by them. Some dozen, perhaps, within the last 
fifty years, have obtained popularity as public singers and 
dancers, but it is an ephemeral distinction which no respectable 
gentleman would covet for his wife or daughter. 

They are precarious and uncertain occupations, with licentious 
and sensual exposures. 

They cost much valuable time, and are seldom blended with 
the fireside employments of home. 

Few women have composed one bar of standard music, or 
made or contrived anything new or important in any art or 
science. Whenever they have attempted it, they have abjured 
the charms of wife and mother. 

Their minds, tastes, and propensities were not designed for 
these spheres of action, and it is as absurd and unreasonable to 
push upon or exact these efforts from them as it would be to 
enlist them for active service in the army or marine. 

They are intended for occupations infinitely more refined and 
essential for the morals and security of society. 

In their proper sphere, if they are appropriately prepared 
and encouraged, they obtain greater elevation than man can iu 
his occupations; and it is ridiculous and cruel to withhold from 
them the means of a competent and thorough knowledge for 
the fulfilment of their high and glorious destiny. 

Boys are accomplished, without regard to expense, in every 
branch of science necessary to fit them for their intended busi- 
ness; and why not give a girl the same chance? 

If a lad is intended for a learned profession, he is not only 
drilled in all the elements of that particular science, but he is 
taught the ancient and foreign languages, by which to find out 
the learning of others in his art in all times past. Why not 
give his sister the same opportunity for the inevitable and cuiu- 


plicated duties of wife and mother? She is professedly edu- 
cated for these solemn functions, and not for cloistered celibacy. 

Why is she, by the bad taste or ignorance of her mother, ex- 
posed to absurd displays of extravagant dress, awkward per- 
formance upon a piano or guitar, or of a mimic squall of some 
vagrant singer; togallopade in a public ball-room, for all which 
she may entertain great disgust, to obtain proficiency in which 
requires long and patient labor, which may be hateful to her 
suitors, and which an intelligent and respectable husband might 
not regard as a necessary accomplishment ? 

Is it not wonderful that parents can regard these frivolous 
and equivocal accomplishments as recommendations for their 
daughters ? and, is it not to be supposed that a prudent man 
wanting a decent wife will be deterred by such repulsive over- 
tures ? that his own good sense will admonish him to avoid 
such matrimonial undertakings ? If he is a prudent man, rich 
or poor, he will avoid the proposal ; if he is so thoughtless and 
indiscreet as to be drawn in by such deceptions, he is not worth 

Mothers do not want their daughters married to worthless 
men who cannot support them; and they should not judge so 
meanly of their daughters, or of their suitors, as to show their 
daughters up by fine dress and display. 

They should know that young men of intelligence and re- 
spectability compare the personal and domestic qualifications 
of their intended wives with their recollection of the virtues 
of their own mothers ; and that propensities at variance with 
these just and virtuous attributes of the female character will 
be shunned. 

That every discreet man, in pursuit of a wife, will recollect 
the cheerful, prompt, quiet, unseen, and patient industry of 
his home, the well-aired apartments, clean lodgings and ward- 
robe, punctual and refreshing meals, welcome home times, 
happy greetings in health, and quiet vigils and tender watch- 
ing in sickness. 

So constant, serene, mysterious, heavenly, that its silent con- 
templation with every man who has a heart brings forth tears 
of pious joy. 

The mother and the daughter who think that men are not 
to be judged by these standards, but by their licentious appe- 
tites, are prepared for stratagems, and treat their iutended hus- 
bands as if they were not gentlemen. 


How many thousands of honest women have been doomed 
to lonely wretchedness by these cruel and scandalous exposures ! 
or, when married, have, in shame, deplored their unfitness for 
domestic life, and have been compelled to submit to the severe 
humiliation of learning their duty after marriage ! 

A girl should be adequately skilled and thoroughly practiced 
in every branch of housekeeping, from the trimming of a lamp 
and the kindling of a fire to the genteel reception and enter- 
tainment of the friends of her husband and herself. The ne- 
cessary supplies for her pantry and her kitchen — their prices, 
qualities, preservation, appropriate use and combinations ; the 
quality, value, use, and care of all the culinary utensils, furni- 
ture, linen, aud bedding, together with all the chemistry re- 
quired for the scientific management and execution of her 
cooking, baking, and washing ; with enough of geography, 
grammar, history, and things in general for reading and con- 

She should be taught to cherish and maintain a sweet tem- 
per and industrious habits, and to be a good mistress and house- 
keeper ; to be content with her home ; to be a loving wife and 
pious mother. 

Every girl should be well tried, and carefully disciplined in 
all these essential elements of her destiny, without which mar- 
riage is a perjury, and married life is a fraud; with which it is 
honorable in all things, fills up more blanks, lights up more 
stars, secures more peace, gives more joy, and approaches 
nearer to the raptures of heaven than all other earthly felici- 
ties combined. 

0, ye that are thus blessed, be charitable to the lonely aud 
forsaken wanderers from the paths of virtue and religion ! 

Without hope, they sigh for and gaze in anguish on your 
paradise, as the first garden was looked back upon by its smit- 
ten down and cast out fugitives. 

The entire system of education involves the whole range of 
man's existence and control from the time he first germsWil 
death. All require care, subsistence, instruction, constraint, 
and punishment. 

In the last branch of this great code of necessary discipline, 
there has ever been the most inexcusable and gross relaxation 

Under the plausible pretensions of philanthropy, morhid 
sympathies, fanaticism, and ignorance have had full play 

Necessary restraints and imperious moral vindications have 


yielded to ridiculous substitutes, the jest and laughing-stock of 

Human nature is made up of all the grades of virtue and 
vice, from the natural ruffian to the pure saint, from man made 
in the intellectual image of God down to the brute. 

They must therefore be treated as they are found ; and any 
management not adapted to this assortment of character is 
wholly useless. 

All intelligent men agree that an efficient compact for their 
security is essential to the existence of organized communities. 
And as incident to this contract, it is as necessary that the 
helpless should be protected as that the strong and predatory 
should be restrained. The first cannot be sustained without 
keeping off the other. 

There can be no useful education without religion. We fear 
not each other or ourselves, but we fear God. And, if the 
mind, when tender, is deeply and solemnly imbued with reli- 
gion, the worth of moral subjugation is begun. 

Impressions of right and wrong are then made upon the un- 
polluted soul of a child, which no temptation can overcome. 
They enter into, and are engrafted upon, his nature. 

It is very seldom that a child who has had a proper domes- 
tic, moral, and religious education, who has been to church and 
tenderly trained, carefully watched, and kept out of wicked 
company, and away from evil examples, turns out bad. 

He is not seen drinking and smoking about corners, swearing 
and shouting at theatres, running and fighting with fire compa- 
nies, in riots, watch-houses or prisons. 

Everything connected with religion seems to prosper and 

Much sin has been committed in the name of religion. 

Jews, Pagans and Christians, each in their turn, have 
drenched the earth with blood in the name of religion. But this 
does not militate against true religion ; it only exposes the 
wickedness of those who profane religion. 

In the United States, where all religious persuasions are 
tolerated, there has been no opportunity to use it for political 
purposes ; and there have ceased to be any public abuses under 
its sanction. Its prosperity has been unexampled. 

The different sects have forms, governments, and ceremonies 
suited for every prejudice and taste, and at every corner and 
turn throughout the land, there is a temple for public worship. 


The eagerness for religious instruction exceeds the supply of 
teachers; and there are more preachers of the Gospel, wholly 
dependent upon the people for patronage and support, than 
there ever has heen in any other country. 

They have no earthly incentive but the approbation of their 

Their labor and devotion are extraordinary. 

There is nowhere a class of men so blameless and pious. 

Instances of improper conduct or lack of zeal are few, and 
religion unaided by law is more pure, more universal, and more 
fashionable, than where it is forced upon the people. 

There is nowhere so much valuable pulpit teaching and pure 
piety as there is with the people and their clergy in the United 

The doctrine of legal religion has been by this toleration 
triumphantly refuted. Religion is too pure to be touched or 
used by human laws or their functionaries. 

Religion has been less helped, and done more good in the 
United States than in any country. 

The Methodists have retrieved and saved millions of aban- 
doned wretches, and raised them from the lowest depths of infamy 
to honest and honorable reformation. 

All acrimony has been subdued, and conventions and asso- 
ciations of different persuasions are extensively formed for the 
universal diffusion of Gospel knowledge. 

To those who have witnessed the state of the churches in 
Europe, and compared them with this country, it would seem 
that here the Millennium had really begun. 

The freedom of the churches removes all occasion for disputes 
upon doctrinal questions, which are never listened to with com- 
placency, and leaves open for their ministers the broad field of 
repentance and faith. 

Sermons most diligently prepared, profound and learned, by 
men of great talents and genius, are most eloquently preached, 
with extemporaneous devout and fervent prayers in every part 
of the country. 

All the denominations have theological schools and colleges, 
and vie with each other in the competent education of their 

No one can spend his Sabbath-day to more profit and advan- 
tage than by listening to the splendid and eloquent productions 
of these accomplished orators and profound scholars. 


There never has been a people favored with so much light 
and learning from the pulpit 

The man who can hear these sublime lessons without feeling 
devout homage, who can listen to these beautiful and precious 
elucidations, and scoff at religion, is indeed a fool. 

Throughout this free and glorious country, every Sabbath 
throngs the churches numerously with men, and with all the 
women and children, clean, healthy, cheerful and respectable in 
all their appointments. 

The morning dawns upon the prayers and songs of millions 
of these blessed babes, early from their slumbers, leaping to 
the Sunday schools, where the first elements of learning and the 
Holy Scriptures are zealously inculcated till the hour for worship. 
Who has witnessed the beautiful exercises and the long and 
interesting processions of these innocent children, from their 
school-rooms to the church, without a fervent prayer in holy 
faith that they may be preserved from the pollutions of this 
sinful world ? And who has seen that hope blighted ? 
Scoff at Religion ! ! ! It is 

"The fool hath said in his heart there is no God." 
Ask these intelligent Sabbath-school children what is the 
meaning of religion, and they will calmly and rationally tell 
you that to love God and hate sin is to secure peace here and 
hope hereafter. 

Follow them to maturity, and mark their settled habits of 
patient and honest industry, their thrifty gains, their temperate 
and peaceful lives, and their reasonable expectation of a blessed 
immortality beyond the grave. 

Pure and undefiled religion is the source and fountain of all 
knowledge and virtue, the corner-stone of every government. 

No man can justly claim the respect and confidence of his 
family and his fellow men, unless his religious conversation and 
deportment demonstrate to the world that he is worthy of the 
countenance and confidence of his Maker. 

There can be no morality, private worth, or public safety with- 
out religion; and the man who derides the Bible, the holy Sab- 
bath and religion, is worse than a heathen. He banishes the 
fears of the sinner and encourages wickedness. He strikes 
away the foundations of the hopes of the true believers, and 
blurs and blights all that restrains crime and rewards virtue. 




Not always index of the heart — Intimacies — Strangers — Deportment — Con- 
fidence — Singularity of speech or manners — May choose our own com- 
pany — John Randolph — Jefferson — The art is simple — It is to be unaf- 
fected — Sexes — Marriage — Some covet society above them — True stand- 
ard, learning and virtue — All talk too much — Friends should be few — 
Proper restraint — Good for all — Matrimony best society — Should be 
general — Distinctions — Orders — Bad motives — Idleness — To buy and 
sell on credit — Tolive extravagantly — Largehouses — Insolvency — Public 
stock of supply not enough — Productive labor certain source of riches 
— Wrong to speculate in trade, or live on it — No law can excuse from 
paying debts without explanation — Or force creditors to allow debtors 
tools, furniture, and $300 worth of property — If this should be so, let 
the public do it, and not creditors — It opens doors to defraud creditors 
out of $300 as often as it is spent, and that amount can be obtained 
again — Travelers — Ignorance and neglect — Skill in science, &c. — Mo- 
rality — Taxes on churches, colleges, graves, &c. — Taxes of England — 
Tariff protection to labor, &c. — Religion, &c. 

The habits and manners are not always an index of the 

Some are judged proud because they are naturally timid, 
quiet, and reserved ; others as haughty, because they are watch- 
ful, cautious, and shy amongst strangers, when they may be as 
liberal and benevolent as those of polished speech and ready 

Nor is the use of singular words, or pronunciation, or appa- 
rent awkwardness of behavior, evidence of ignorance, vulgar- 
ity, or carelessness towards the feelings of others. Such per- 
sons, in their own circles, may hold a consistent position, have 
appropriate caste, and be distinguished for hospitality and be- 
nevolence, while the conventional manners of others, according 
to their prejudices of education, might appear to be' frigid and 
ridiculous affectations of kindness and good breeding. 

Every one has an unquestionable right to choose his own 


company. No one is at liberty to be dissatisfied because bis 
society is not desired ; the rule is reciprocal ; if this was not so, 
we might force ourselves upon others against their will, and 
be obliged to submit to the same obnoxious annoyance from 

The occasions for business, accidental meetings, and intro- 
ductions of mere ceremony, supply impromptu all the re- 
quirements for casual intercourse, and leave the parties to their 
option for future recognition without any breach of good taste. 

Hasty intimacies are unnecessary and indiscreet. They 
place the parties in false positions, and expose them to censure 
and suspicion. All proper decorums and courtesies may be 
consistently maintained without the reciprocations of personal 

A departure from this simple rule of discretion comes from 
the irrestrainable propensity that some have to talk incessantly 
about themselves ; a practice that betrays great egotism, igno- 
rance, and vulgar breeding. 

It is said that John Randolph knew more men than any 
man living, and gave to all a free and cordial greeting, accord- 
ing to their sphere and condition ; but that there was but one 
person on earth who ever had his confidence, and that was his 
mother. This ready and singular expert in the natural phi- 
losophy of human nature was never known, in his personal 
intercourse, to trifle with the prejudices or sensibilities of any 
one, and yet his apparent manner was somewhat severe. 

" It was this readiness which made John Randolph so terrible 
in retort. He was the Thersites of Congress — a tongue-stab- 
ber. No hyperbole of contempt or scorn could be launched 
against him, but he could overtop it with something more 
scornful and contemptuous. Opposition only maddened him 
into more brilliant bitterness. 'Isn't it a shame, Mr. Presi- 
dent/ said he one day in the Senate, 'that the noble bull-dogs 
of the administration should be wasting their precious time in 
worrying the rats of the opposition V Immediately the Senate 
was in an uproar, and he was clamorously called to order. The 
presiding officer, however, sustained him ; and pointing his 
long, skinny finger at his opponents, Randolph screamed out — 
' Rats, did I say? mice, viicc' " — E. P. Whipple. 

This was the result of great firmness, independence, and ma- 
turity of thought; for, although he would not contradict or 
debate in private conversation, he maintained a resolute, but 


respectful denial of whatever he held to be false or in bad taste; 
and if his sense of respect for himself was invaded, he dis- 
tinctly and promptly resented the affront. He did not con- 
form to the princely refinements of Chesterfield, nor the shin- 
ing accomplishments of the Count d'Orsay; but there was in 
his bearing all the delightful pleasantry of Lafayette, the 
polished wit of Franklin, the winning seriousness of Jefferson, 
the brilliant intellectuality of the younger Adams, and the 
independence of Washington. 

While these may be regarded as models of good taste and 
refinement, it is not expected that every one can imitate them. 

Few have had occasion to consult so much circumspection, or 
have been so much in the fashionable world as the persons re- 
ferred to, but every one has judgment and discretion sufficient 
to see that, as a matter of self-respect, and to avoid prejudices 
against himself, it is his policy to maintain towards strangers 
the most exemplary and unaffected simplicity of speech and 
deportment; to avoid contradiction, vain and supercilious be- 
havior, and on no account to speak of himself, or anything 
that concerns his private affairs; to listen, not talk; not to say 
anything against any one, or call in question the motives, per- 
suasions, and conduct of any one. 

The propensity of the vain is to attract attention amongst 
strangers. They assume a pompous air, affect to be wise and 
grand, dress foppishly and extravagantly, talk loudly to each 
other in personal and ambiguous abstractions, and generally 
make themselves not more conspicuous than ridiculous, whereas 
a true gentleman or lady will carefully avoid all such vapid 

The art of being genteel and civil is simple and easy. It 
requires a small amount of the forbearance to others that we 
constantly impose upon ourselves. We wander over the world 
in rigid self-denial, and voluntarily subject ourselves to every 
exposure and privation for wealth and fame ; and may we not 
to others yield a modicum of love ? 

It may not be said that this circumspection will mar social 
intercourse, for no safe or comfortable personal interchanges can 
be had without them, and it is far the better that there should 
be no intercourse than that which makes trouble. 

The stringent exercise of these rules proceeds from the er- 
roneous and mistaken delusion that the standard of our merits 
is above that of others. 


Where there is no crime or vulgarism, this is a dangerous 
and unjust conclusion. No man is bound to hold any inter- 
course with those of bad habits, or with one who is profane, 
coarse or filthy, but if free from these objections, it is absurd 
and selfish to hold ourselves above them. 

A neglect of these wholesome regulations with strangers 
oversteps the limits of the occasion which brings us together, 
and turns the interview into an embarrassing effort by one or 
both for abrupt sociability; and if the spasmodic feeling is not 
mutual, one plays the blockhead, while the other suffers an ob- 
trusion. A man is no more bound to have his time and his 
thoughts obtruded upon by untimely, prolonged, and unwished- 
for visits, than he is required to have his house or his table thus 
abused. And, to hold one by the button in the cold or the 
rain, and press upon him an uninvited colloquy, is as rude as 
to push him from his right seat at a public place, or to jostle 
him in the street, or to puff cigar-smoke into his face. 

There is with some an itching and ridiculous inclination to 
make the society of those they think above them. If this ad- 
vantage be wealth, they may be mistaken. 

Nothing is so uncertain as the reputation of being rich. If 
we are sure the person is rich, it is degrading to bow to money. 

If it be learning, morals or intellect, there may be a like 
mistake ; and if not so, we may seek that which we cannot 
appreciate. The secret of all good breeding is, to press no man 
for his conversation, and suffer no one to annoy us. Inter- 
course is not so essential as is supposed; there is too much of 
it ; and hence come strife and bickerings. Out of the circle of 
our familiar friends, we should not be so free, nor permit others 
to be so with us, as to exceed the limits of appropriate conver- 
sation upon indifferent subjects, or of such matters as properly 
belong to the occasion. 

There are topics of general interest that may be run over 
and adverted to, to preface business and precede departure, but 
further is wholly unnecessary. 

We all talk too much. We should think twice and speak 
once, and keep a bridle on our tongue. This is a dictate of 

With our friends be free and unreserved, but even to them 
be merciful, and let them not be deluged by words and gabble. 

There is, perhaps, no habit that so soon exposes ignorance, 
or lack of knowledge, as a propensity to talk too much ; to pun, 


or joke, or jibe, contradict, criticise, or sneer at what others say 
or 'do; nor anything that excites so much disgust as habitual 
filth or intemperance in language, liquor, and tobacco. 

Every man's correct sensibilities, cleanliness of person, deli- 
cacy and taste, are his property, his own prerogative ; they belong 
to, and are essentially and exclusively his personal franchise, and 
no one has any more right to invade them, or disturb or inter- 
rupt him in their peaceable enjoyment, than to intermeddle 
with his wardrobe, or his wife and children. 

No one can ask excuse, or claim ignorance of this plain rule 
of common law, acknowledged by all the world. 

An omnibus-boy will chide the impertinent obtrusion of a 
passenger by the rebuke, " That man don't ivant to talk to you. 
Let him alone, or leave the coach." 

In private life, at a ball or other place of amusement, no one, 
without an open disregard of propriety, may break the delicate 
crust of non-acquaintance without introduction, unless specially 
for business or just excuse; and with females, the rule requires 
her previous consent. 

It may be asked, how anything can be more just, reciprocal, 
and fair? It creates no obstacles to proper acquaintance; on 
the contrary, it guards, purifies, and secures all the streams of 
social intercourse. 

Every one has an undeniable right to husband, and make the 
best possible use of, his intellectual and social capital, just as if 
it were money or any other thing of value. 

If, in an honorable way, we can obtain the acquaintance and 
confidence of those whose learning and influence may better 
and improve our condition, it is as legitimate and laudable as 
to use harmless and lawful means to attract the public patronage 
to our occupations and pursuits. 

The careful and skillful employment of these judicious pre- 
cautions leads individual enterprise in every path to the most 
substantial and permanent results; and when discreetly and 
delicately appropriated to the preliminaries of marriage, in the 
happy concurrences of age, family-blood, education, taste, and 
fortune, there is a capital in the copartnership which never rusts 
or wastes. 

What fruitions must inevitably attend such propitiations, 
when heterogeneous mating blooms in glory ! 

These chaste and wholesome rules for social safety are some- 
times superseded by incidents that excuse their use. For ex- 


ample, parties who know that the} 7 are known to each other, or 
from good cause assuming mutual wishes for acquaintance • but 
as a general rule, there should be no breach of well-settled de- 
corums. They contribute too largely to the comforts and safety 
of society to be trifled with. 

They are not intended to rebuke the honorable desire for 
social intercourse, but to encourage its legitimate increase and 
diffusion ; to conform its exercise and spread to laws, which 
will secure confidence and mutual respect. On the contrary, 
there is too little safe and lasting sociability for lack of a sound 
currency. The mediums of exchange are at heavy discount, and 
often spurious and counterfeit. Unless there is some voucher, 
some introduction, we fear to take for good each other's coin. 

Let the currency be sound, and bear upon its face the stamp 
and certainty of truth, and its bright and virgin purity delights 
the hearts of all. 

Let these wise and simple rules govern. Abridge the cursed 
love for gain and glory; diminish the useless and gaudy pagean- 
tries of houses, furniture and dress; devote more time to intel- 
lectual culture, refreshing exercise, social intercourse, kindness 
and love; conspire to drive off temptations, vice, and anger, to 
blend labor with cheerfulness, and gladden life with harmless 
mirth and joy. 

There is a proper regard for all the formalities of life well 
understood and prudently observed by all discreet and sensible 
persons. True benevolence and good manners demand from 
every one kindness and courtesy, but no more. 

" The powers of the human mind are of greater extent than 
is generally imagined. He who, either from taste or necessity, 
exercises them frequently, soon finds that the highest felicities 
of which our nature is capable reside entirely within ourselves. 
The wants of life are, for the greater part, merely artificial. 
Had we courage to seek our happiness in ourselves, we should 
frequently find in our own breasts a greater variety of resources 
than all outward objects are capable of affording." 

"A long life may be passed without finding a friend in whose 
understanding and virtue we can equally confide, and whose 
opinion we can value at once for its justness and sincerity. A 
weak man, however honest, is not qualified to judge. A man 
of the world, however penetrating, is not fit to counsel. Friends 
arc often chosen for similitude of manners, and therefore each 
palliates the other's failings, because they are his own. Friends 


are tender and unwilling to give pain, for they are interested, 
and fearful to offend." — Dr. Johnson. 

Confidence exclusively belongs to our real friends, to those 
identified with our fortunes; benefactors, parents, brothers and 
sisters, wives and children. These should be our household 
gods ; their fate and ours are linked together, they cannot break 
our cords of love without cutting theirs asunder : they are of 
our blood, and the tie should be preserved with bright and 
sacred faith. 

When these affections are absent, there are no kind or amiable 
feelings left. No mercy, no charity, no love. 

In all these essential elements of mental and moral philosophy, 
the women far excel the men. They are not so morose, ava- 
ricious, and intractable ; they are more unaffected, sincere, chaste, 
loyal, temperate, and domestic; they seldom err if untempted 
and not misled by the other sex. 

And if all the courts, elections, political festivals, and other 
public meetings and private convocations of the men were so 
conducted that their mothers, wives, and daughters might delight 
to witness them, there would be an end to drunkenness, smok- 
ing, riot and murder. 

Again. — Bad manners consist not only in rude deportment, 
conduct, and conversation, but in the dishonest motives and 
unjust intentions and purposes of the heart. 

11 The Worthless Poor. — Not every one that begs is poor; not 
every one that wanteth is poor; not every one that is poor is 
poor indeed. They are the poor whom we private men in 
charity, and you that are magistrates in justice, stand bound to 
relieve, who are old, or impotent, and unable to work; or in 
these hard and depopulating times [1623] are willing, but can- 
not be set on work; or have a greater charge upon them than 
can be maintained by their work. These and such as these are 
the poor indeed: let us all be good to such as these. But we 
that arc private men as brethren to these poor ones, and show 
them mercy; be you that are magistrates as fathers to these 
poor ones, and do them justice. But as for those idle, stubborn, 
professed wanderers, that can and may and will not work, and 
under the name and habit of poverty rob the poor indeed of 
our alms and their maintenance, let us harden our hearts 
against them, and not give to them; do you execute the seve- 
rity of the law upon them, and not spare them. It is St. Paul's 
order— nay, it is the ordinance of the Holy Ghost, and we should 


all put to an helping hand to see it kept; he that will not labor 
let him not eat. These ulcers and drones of the commonwealth 
are ill worthy of any honest man's alms, of any good magis- 
trate's protection." — Sanderson's Fourteen Sermons, p. 107. 

It is bad manners to be lazy, idle, useless, and without a good 
cause; not to be engaged in some pursuit, productive to our- 
selves and society; and to run in debt. 

These derelictions are no more excusable than any other 
wrong, because they are done by others, and are fashionable. 

To live expensively or carelessly, because others do so, and 
to say that it is uncomfortable to live with dry and stringent 
economy, when the means are at hand for free and liberal in- 
dulgences when we are in debt, is also bad manners. 

And it is also bad manners for tradesmen and mechanics to 
increase their style of living according to the means within 
their reach, without the least regard to a rigid calculation from 
day to day of the proportion which their disbursements bear to 
their profits. 

They involve themselves in a course of extravagant living, 
which requires constant and dead expenses, without regard to 
what this may lead to; and without any certain source of de- 
pendence to fall back upon, if it is not met by their business. 

Large houses, with costly furniture, servants, entertain- 
ments, conveyances, traveling and fashionable dress, jewelry, 
and plate are bought, and a style of expensive living is per- 
manently started on credit, or paid for with business funds not 
laid by, without the slightest regard to whether this indulgence 
can rest upon the basis of sure profits and certain collections. 

The result is speedy ruin, murmurs about uncollected debts, 
and the false and imprudent assertion that a failure in business 
is evidence of enterprise, without which no trade can prosper. 

Then come the shameful subterfuges of bankrupt releases, 
insolvent protections, perjured concealments, fraudulent exemp- 
tions, and unlawful protections of property. 

There is not one broken mechanic or tradesman in ten thou- 
sand whose failure cannot be directly traced back to his pro- 
fligate expenses of living, and his reckless and censurable sales 
on credit. 

The passion is to push business; to make large sales on time, 
without proper caution, to distant and unknown and improper 
persons; to swell and inflate business; to count up and com- 


pare purchases with sales, and draw on the nominal balance as 
if it were in bank; when this flattering and visionary result 
is mere figures, to which should be added thousands of the 
unpaid liabilities for the goods purchased, which never may be 
realized. No honest man will thus trifle with the rights of his 

Meantime, habits of living and affectations of high life are 
indulged in, which exactly correspond to the propensities and 
appetites of the dissolute and successful gambler. 

Without the slightest pretensions to education or refinement, 
with the coarsest propensities, ignorance and low breeding, and 
vulgar connections and associates, they presumptuously and 
vainly attempt to copy the style and imitate the habits of re- 
spectable persons. 

The gross inclinations with which they began life are in- 
creased and aggravated. The little of industry and decency of 
character they ever had is blunted and banished by depraved 

No man of stern integrity and pure honor will ever engage 
in mere speculations, depending upon uncertain and perilous 
contingencies, without capital. No prudent or discreet man 
will do so, even with sufficient capital to back his adventures. 

The ordinary pursuits immediately connected and identified 
with the wants and necessary occasions of society are not 

The produce of grain and stock of mechanics, manufacturing, 
commercial interchanges and trade, and all the incidents there- 
to, are subjects of certain and honorable pursuit. 

If they are judiciously commenced, and honestly and care- 
fully prosecuted, they never fail of success. So far from their 
being uncertain, the public suffer great inconvenience and injury 
for want of honest mechanics and traders. 

It is a constant source of trouble and vexation with the com- 
munity to encounter their falsehoods, delays, deceptions, and 

There is not a respectable person in any community that 
will not bear testimony to the fact, that every honest, industri- 
ous, and competent mechanic and tradesman, who attends faith- 
fully to his business, is an object of interest and liberal patron- 
age by the public. 

Such persons, with economy and prudence, if they have their 
health, and meet with no unavoidable accident, such as fire or 


floods, never fail to prosper. They will always find employ- 
ment and patronage. 

This spirit of idleness, loose conduct, extravagance, and neg- 
lect lies at the basis of all failures in business. 

It is the secret cause of the poverty of the journeyman ; the 
arrogance, petty falsehoods, and breaking down of the employer; 
the dashing profligacy and disgraceful bankruptcy of the trades- 
man, the manufacturer, and the merchant. 

No man has any right to begin any business upon a scale 
beyond his capital and custom. He may commence without 
one cent of money, with a capital in character and credit, which 
he is criminal to misuse or put in jeopardy. 

He has no right to buy or contract for goods which he has 
not a reasonable certainty that he can turn into cash, and pay 
for within his stipulated credit; and whenever he does this 
upon an adventure to hold on to for an unexpected rise in the 
market, or to push off on credit to uncertain, doubtful, and dis- 
tant purchasers, whose means and integrity he does not and 
cannot know to be good, he lends his integrity to his cupidity, 
and puts upon his creditors the peril of his secret enterprise. 

If he succeeds, it is the luck of the gambler. His heart is 
debased by familiarity with secret fraud, and he will repeat the 

All these malversations are bad manners, and it is bad man- 
ners to demand an excuse for, or furnish any legal exoneration 
from, the payment of all lawful debts. 

The proposition is impudent and unjust, that any man who 
has obtained your labor, goods, or money is not to be after- 
wards held to have them, or their equivalent in value. 

And that he shall not be personally required to give an 
ample and sufficient reason for their non-production. 

He has obtained them from you with honest or fraudulent 
intentions. If the object was dishonest, he is a thief, against 
whom you cannot defend yourself. No one can fathom the 
secret motives of the artful and smooth-faced swindler. 

If he obtained them upon the representation of his having 
property acquired by inheritance or personal acquisition, then 
he has just that much more in addition to your property ; the 
latter is yours until it is paid for, and the other is pledged for 
your indemnity. 

If you trusted him upon the faith of his integrity alone, still 
ae has got your goods; and where are they? Is there any 


reason why he should not tell where they are, and what he has 
done with them, if he will not pay you ? 

Let him pay you the price of your goods, or give them hack 
to you, or explain what he has done with them. 

Is he not bound to do one of these? Your father has 
worked for, or you have earned and saved, the money you paid 
for your goods : it was yours ; you honestly obtained it. 

It is the means by which you live. You cannot live with- 
out it ; and he has got it. He takes your life, when he takes 
your means to sustain it. And is he not to pay you, nor re- 
turn your goods, nor explain the reason why he will not ? 

He sets you at defiance — calls you inhuman, cruel, and per- 
secuting, and claims sympathy, excuse, exemption, and protec- 
tion from that law which he has violated. 

No man has ever pretended but that such an individual is 
amenable to his creditors, and that this is a personal liability. 

You obtain your judgment when all offsets and defences 
have been made ; take out your process; place it in the hands 
of the proper oificer, who is commanded to call upon the de- 
linquent, and obtain your debt. 

The demand is met by a flat refusal to pay ; and then he is 
required to produce property — your property, or its substi- 
tute, out of which satisfaction of the debt may be made. 

He has had your property ; the presumption is that he still 
has it; but this he denies. 

What is to be done ? Is he to go Scot free ? This is not pre- 
tended. He is to explain — to give an account of what has 
become of the property; and, inasmuch as the presumptions 
of unfairness rest upon him until he does this, he must now 
go and explain. 

He has made the crisis himself, and he must meet it. He 
has got your goods ; defaulted in payment; been sued; suf- 
fered judgment ; and now the time has come for him to pay, 
give up his property, or show why he cannot do one of these 

He must therefore now go into custody until he removes the 
just suspicion of fraud that rests on him. 

This has ever been the law ; but such is the loose and scan- 
dalous disregard of right and justice in the hands of poli- 
ticians, who never pay their debts, that recently they have re- 
pudiated it; and this just redress against knaves and profli- 
gates has been reproached as a relic of the barbarous ages. 


They cannot morally vindicate or justify themselves behind 
the screen of legislative authority. Such an enactment ob- 
tains no force or virtue from that source of arbitrary power any 
more than any other act inherently wrong in itself; any more 
than a papal indulgence would justify murder, or a statute in- 
validating the validity of a contract. 

They have not only excused and indemnified a debtor from 
all answerability to his creditor of what he has done with his 
property, but they have openly legalized plunder, under the 
pretext of compassion and philanthropy to the poor. 

They have not ordered that, if a mechanic is poor, and has 
no tools to work with, and no furniture, &c, to keep house 
with, and says that he wants them, the public shall be taxed to 
get him $20 worth of tools, and some $100 worth of furniture, 
which shall be loaned to him on a free and perpetual lease, ex- 
empt from liability for all rent and debts; but they have gone 
further, and decreed that any man who can by trick, covin, or 
fraud, get this amount of goods on credit, shall hold it in- 
exorably against all the world, and especially against the iden- 
tical subject of his fraud. 

Crime is stimulated by indulgence. So soon as this license 
for private plunder was understood, and its fruits obtained and 
enjoyed, the luxury was repeated every few days. 

There was no limit or restraint to it ; and it has been indulged 
in with impunity by thousands, as often as the possession of the 
same amount of goods could be obtained by art and duplicity. 

This practice of the migrating and wandering poor had 
passed into a common joke. A poor man obtains on credit 
$150 worth of tools, furniture, cows, sheep, &c; assumes the 
mask of honest simplicity by rolling up his sleeves, going to 
work, and invoking the confidence of other verdants; renews 
the purchase, sells the goods, spends the money, and repeats 
the cheat, as often as he can find a victim to prey upon. 

But this bad manners was not sufficiently refined. 

Another act has passed into a law, carrying this accommo- 
dating exemption to the sum of $300. 

So that this sphere of plunder is enlarged to -an extent far 
beyond their original expectations. The genteel and fashion- 
able may now participate in felicitous bounty. 

Every man may hold, in defiance of his creditor, $300, in 
ready money, in household furniture, loan upon mortgage, in 




gold or silver plate, in a stock of dry goods or groceries, in a 
boot-shop, or tailor's mart, or in a farm and stock of cattle. 

With these capacities for display and credit, he may every 
day impose upon the honest confidence of others, in the sum 
of $300 more, and feed upon their hard earnings with legal 

When his powers of research into their pockets is exhausted 
in one place, he can change the locality of his munificent 
swindling to a new sphere, and repeat his pauper frauds, with- 
out limit or restraint, upon another community of unprotected, 
honest laborers. 

The bankrupt remedy is compulsory. The creditor can 
enforce it upon a defaulting debtor. Its requirements are 
stringent, and its penalties are severe. The presumptions of 
unfairness lie with the bankrupt to explain. It gives him but 
one discharge. No man can obtain a second release under this 
law. These are its leading and distinct characteristics every 

And still this remedy always meets with resolute and intelli- 
gent opponents, who maintain that no lawful contract can be 
annulled by law. 

The Congress of the United States, against great opposition, 
enacted this law twice ; but very soon, and almost unanimously, 
repealed it. 

But this new code abolishes the liability of the debtor to ap- 
pear and explain what he has done with the property of his 
creditor, to any amount, and for his whole life; and gives him 
an indemnity for the undisturbed possession and enjoyment of 
$300 worth of property, even though it should be the identical 
property out of which the creditor has been cheated. 

The only remedy left for the creditor is by bill of discovery 
or indictment for swindling. These are idle and insulting 

Swindling is always perpetrated under the cloak, and with 
the usual circumstances which attend every purchase and sale. 

The secret motives and fraudulent designs of the defendant 
will be cautiously concealed ; they cannot be proved ; the law 
will not permit fraud to be implied or inferred. 

And in a proceeding by bill for discovery, the defendant, in 
his answers to the interrogatories filed, will of course deny 
every insinuation against his honest intentions. 


On a recent occasion, under a bill of discovery, the defendant 
acknowledged that he had reiterated his dexterity three times 
within two months. He said he had spent the money for the 
necessary occasions of his family ; denied the fraudulent intent 
— it could not he proved upon him, and he escaped with im- 
punity ; thus encouraged himself, and with an example for 
others to plunder and prey upon society. 

These legal immunities were never intended for the poor, 
which means the " destitute." No poor man, or honest man, 
ever asked for them. They were proposed by the ignorant, 
under the influence of morbid sympathies and a mistaken view 
of the rights of debtor and creditor; and these erroneous pro- 
jects have been exposed and advocated by the lazy, unprinci- 
pled, and driveling politicians for popularity. 

It is the same spirit of injustice and wrong, which has got 
up the scheme called "free schools," in which the poor have 
no part, but in which the dishonest, the reckless, and the lazy 
revel at the public expense. 

It is aside from all the provisions for help to the poor ; it was 
made ostensibly for the poor, but with the secret design to bene- 
fit knaves ; the poor are not advantaged, but injured by it. 

The rights of" creditors, and the validity of contracts, have 
been dragged into the pauper police and profanely desecrated, 
for the exclusive accommodation of the sinister. 

What business has a pauper to be in debt? What right 
has any man to run in debt, with the intention of not paying 
his creditor ? And what right has the legislature to force credit- 
ors to support their debtors ? 

They have power to compel the public to contribute money 
for the necessary support and comfort of the poor, for which all 
are compelled to pay their respective proportions. 

But they have no right " to levy unequal taxes" and to com- 
pel creditors to support their debtors, under the pretext that 
they are poor, and thus say to every creditor that his debt shall 
be converted into a poor rate, and a pauper contribution, at the 
option of the debtor. 

They have no right to invert the use of words, and in the 
name of the poor laws, which provides for "want" and "desti- 
tution," (for these are the defining words of the term "poor") 
to decree that he who has run in debt to any amount, and re- 
fuses to pay it, shall be embraced within the meaning of the 


word "poor," and upon this false and naked allegation be ex- 
cused from tolling what he has done with his pauper booty. 

Whenever this debtor finds himself, by laziness or extrava- 
gance, unable or unwilling to pay his debts, he may say to his 
creditor, as the law now stands : — 

" Yes, it is true I owe you this thousand, or ten thousand 
dollars ; the amount is immaterial ; my property is all gone except 
this six hundred bushels of corn, or one hundred bushels of 
wheat, I bought of you to-day; or this three hundred dollars in 
cash I borrowed from you yesterday, with my word and honor 
to pay you. But since then I have resolved to be an exempt, 
a pauper, a poor man ; and you must not touch that three 
hundred bushels of corn at your peril; the law gives me this 
liberty against you, and I shall hold you to it." 

The legislature has no authority to legalize these scandalous 
mockeries, and in the name of, and on behalf of the poor, to 
enable men who are not poor, and who should resent the impu- 
tation of pauperism as an insult, to rob and plunder the honest 
and industrious. 

They have no right to establish immunities for the lazy and 
the wicked, nor for the honest, under the pretence of giving 
them capital to begin with, which will oblige every prudent 
man, who has earned and saved his means, to refuse to the poor 
a pound of meat and the rent of a house without payment in 
advance, and thus magnify and increase the wants and desti- 
tution of the real poor, necessarily throw them back upon, and 
increase the poor taxes, and encourage extravagance and crime, 
by giving them license, not only to swindle the public, but to 
compel their creditors to make individual contributions of three 
hundred dollars to every adroit knave who can obtain it from 

All the rights and remedies of creditors have thus been 
taken from them, and given to their debtors. 

There is but one step more to be taken to complete the 
stride obviously meditated. 

The child, perhaps, is now alive who will live to see a fur- 
ther exemption made by law of a thousand dollars freehold, to 
be ycleped a homestead, and an annual exaction by taxes upon 
those who own anything above these two exemptions ($1,300) 
to pay the expenses of the living of these modern pirates, 
unless the honest men, who do earn and save, rouse themselves 


up, and wrench from the rabble the power of the nomination 
for office, and the control of the elections. 

It is bad manners not to fulfil with fidelity our private and 
public undertakings. 

The natural inclination for sloth, and repugnance to careful 
study and patient labor, and the sordid desire to grasp at the 
fruits of industry and genius, without having claim to them, 
are the cause of all the bungling and superficial performance 
of duty. 

There are but few who honestly perform their duty. They 
either do not understand it, or do not care how it is done. They 
are restless, and blame their neglected employments because 
they do not supply their accommodations for idleness and pro- 

Every respectable employment, properly and faithfully pur- 
sued, will prosper, with a thorough knowledge of it, and a dili- 
gent attention to all its details. Too much should not be un- 
dertaken by one person at one time. 

Tanning, shoemaking, farming, storekeeping, grog-selling, 
and squiring cannot all be done by one man ; nor can any one 
efficiently be a conveyancer, attorney, and congressman at the 
same time ; nor a bleeder, dentist, apothecary, and physician 
at one time. 

These different professions were practiced by different per- 
sons in former ages. 

A single fact, which has more power with the ignorant than 
arguments, will show the force of this proposition. 

It is of a gentleman who had an obstinate cutaneous erup- 
tion on the end of his nose, for the cure of which he had for 
five years invoked the medical skill of the United States, and 
London and Paris. 

He held a public post of distinction, in which he was con- 
stantly exposed to observation ; possessed a large fortune, and 
enjoyed high rank for learning, talents, and integrity. 

With all these enviable concurrences, in the mid-day of life, 
his health, peace, and pride were crushed, and despair settled 
upon all his hopes like a thick cloud. At length he resigned 
his office, covered up with a mask the advancing and horrid 
fungus, and resigned himself to voluntary imprisonment for 

On his way home, he halted for the night at the city of , 

where he was spied out by a sagacious old friend, who inquired 
for, and upon being informed of the names of the doctors who 


had been consulted, remarked that none of those gentlemen, he 
thought, were specially regarded as cutaneous physicians; and 
that there was a young doctor of education and good character 
in that city, who, it was said, had turned his attention with 
considerable success to diseases of the skin. 

Hope flashed upon his agonized heart. The gentleman re- 
ferred to was consulted; the story and the symptoms of the 
patient carefully written down; and time was modestly pro- 
posed for thought and research. 

The next day a prescription was ordered, which was made up 
for fifty cents ; the blistered and persecuted nose was released 
from its brutal harness, and covered with soft and cooling ungu- 
ents ; a tablespoonful of the preparation was taken three times a- 
day, with generous living, and free exercise in the open air for 
twelve days; during which time the disgusting deformity gra- 
dually vanished, and the perishing feature resumed its natural 
form, color, and texture. 

Thus far the doctor and his patient were strangers to each 
other. Now there had been miraculously vanquished a revolt- 
ing fatal monster, and a new-born tangible member of the 
human face in its place. 

The senses and imagination of the patient were struck with 
bewildering amazement ! ! Was it a treacherous delusion, or 
a cunning trick to excite hope and betray him to despair ? Was 
this a certain cure, or would the hideous leper again fasten its 
unrelenting and deathly fangs upon his face ? These were 
mental agitations fraught with thrilling horrors. 

The doctor calmly allayed his fears, and gave him an intelli- 
gible, lucid, unassuming, and scientific explanation of the re- 
mote, internal, latent, and secret causes of this malady ; which, 
like many other diseases, have their seat sometimes in insen- 
sible parts, and develop their symptoms by sympathy on remote 
and healthy surfaces of the body. 

He told him that it was not inherent or chronic ; and that it 
could be prevented or removed by the same remedy ; and upon 
being requested to name his charge, diffidently asked if $15 
was too much. 

The curious may be informed that this true and faithful 
servant of the public received, in place of his modest charge, a 
munificent benefaction as a just reward for his fidelity, skill, 
and learning. How much bright light is shed upon the sub- 
ject under consideration by this true revelation ! 


Developments of the practical results of real knowledge 
and untiring industry are thus constantly made in all the 
spheres of mental and moral activity. 

The true philosophy of all moral and social usefulness con- 
sists in diligent fidelity and singleness of purpose. 

No man, with idle, eccentric, or vacillating habits, and super- 
ficial knowledge of his business, should be encouraged or pa- 
tronized. There is no dependence to be placed in his integrity, 
stability, or capacity. Such men are presumptuous in manner, 
extortionate in their prices ; dishonest to the public, stand in 
the way of, and discourage honest industry, talents, learning, 
morals, and modest worth. 

Good manners do not merely consist in amiable deportment 
and civil conversation, but involve the honest and faithful 
discharge of all the personal and conventional duties which we 
expressly and impliedly assume, and are required to perform, in 
whatever we undertake to do. 

Those who are too stupid, or lazy, or ignorant, or depraved 
to perform these duties in good faith, always have art enough 
to screen themselves by appealing to the morbid sympathies of 
the bad, with the pretext that it is uncharitable and bad 
manners to be ungenerous or severe towards any one. 

They live by deception and fraud, and presumptuously invert 
all the laws by which the conduct of honest men are governed, 
to conceal their deceptions and treachery to the public. 

So that they abuse all the elements of good manners by their 
deliberate violation of them ; and insolently invert these con- 
servative rules of right, to maintain their fraudulent perpetra- 
tions on others. 

It is a much greater breach of good manners to charge one 
with bad manners for exposing hypocrisy, quackery, and vice, 
than it is to insult one with coarse and profane language. 

It is bad manners, also, to countenance or encourage, by ex- 
ample, pretexts for evading moral restraints, and a due respect 
for order and law, and a proper reverence for religion, however 
these vulgarisms may be sanctioned by popular and fashionable 

And it is, perhaps, more than bad manners to deride the 
motives, and sneer at the unostentatious labors of those who, 
by charities, schools, and religion, without reward, quietly and 
meekly strive to ameliorate and improve the physical and moral 
condition of man ; and perhaps it is also something worse than bad 


manners to tax their gratuitously obtained means to pamper the 
prodigality, and pay the rash and reckless debts of politicians 
and factionists. 

When it suits the morbid vanity or sordid cupidity of these 
demagogues, levies, without stint, are made to build temples, 
and pay armies of teachers, selected by ignorant politicians, 
to catch the applause of the rabble, by the establishment of 
poor schools ; and millions of debts are contracted ostensibly 
for public improvements, but covertly, for fraudulent contracts 
and embezzlements. 

And when the State becomes bankrupt by their licentious 
prodigality, they impiously propose to tax the sanctuaries for 
God's worship, and the graves of the dead. 

No associations should be permitted, under any pretext, to 
accumulate property beyond their legitimate occasions. 

This is a monopoly which nowhere should be allowed; hut 
all the property required for the necessary and liberal accom- 
modation of charitable and religious institutions should be ex- 
empt from taxation. 

Let corporation monopolies, who subsist upon the public, 
and make no pretensions of benevolence, be taxed. They are 
impregnable to oppression, because their success depends on 
trick and deception. 

The politicians have no right to take or tax a fund, or hos- 
pital, or a house raised by gratuitous contributions, and hon- 
estly dedicated to the comfort of the helpless or the promotion 
of knowledge, morals, or religion. 

No government has the right to tax or clip the loaf given to 
the hungry, or touch the sacred vestments of the altar, under 
the profane pretext that there should be no individual benevo- 
lence, and that the rulers of the people should have an exclus- 
ive monopoly in charity, and that the toleration of religion, 
without taxation, is a special privilege, and has a tendency to 
encourage a union of church and state, which means a test 
and a pledge of conformity to the laws and a support of an 
established church. 

The constitution of all the States, and the constitution of 
the United States disclaim all assumptions of theocracy ; on the 
contrary, they guarantee to every one permission to worship 
God according to the dictates of his conscience, and expressly 
refuse to furnish to this object any preference, aid, or favor. 

The necessary result is that persons using this franchise, as 


incident thereto, may hold and enjoy all the appliances and 
immunities necessary for its enjoyment, at their own expense. 

And the practical operation of the theory is that, so long as 
they keep themselves within their lawful sphere, and out of 
the range of the reserved powers of government, these pri- 
vileges are as sacred as the immunities of liberty and life; 
and if they contribute to the general good, upon all rules of 
public policy, they are entitled to, and should receive, the com- 
placent and benignant patronage and encouragement, and not 
the discountenance and persecutions of, government. 

Suppose that most excellent society called Quakers — whose 
system of police and morals is as near perfection as any similar 
human contrivance can be, if we judge of it by its undisputed 
success — could satisfy the public that they could, at the same 
cost, and free of the pay and venal contingencies of official 
duplicity, take better care of the poor, the idiots, the insane, the 
criminals, and the whole army of fanatics and political jockeys; 
that they would keep better schools and turn out more learned 
men, make wiser laws, and administer justice better, more 
quickly and quietly, than these things are now done by this 
noisy scrambling public; would it not be an obvious saving to 
make a contract with them for the performance of these important 
undertakings ? And is there any pretence but that these efforts 
have been everywhere more thoroughly and honestly accom- 
plished by unpaid and voluntary contributions, when theorists 
and politicians can be kept away from them, than any muni- 
cipal functionaries, with all their ostentation, pageantry, and 
pomp, have ever been able to execute them? 

Such contributions and benevolence can no more be legiti- 
mate objects of taxation than the healing oil or the brotherly 
love of the good Samaritan. 

That which is held for use or profit may be lawfully taxed, 
but not that which is raised for help and light to the blind and 

It would be just as reasonable to tax the funds raised for, 
and the buildings and edifices constructed for, poor schools, 
paupers, criminals, court-houses, and legislation, and which in 
no respect contribute more to the maintenance of order and 
public security than these institutions do. 

The argument that by their exemption from taxation they 
become the objects of the grant of a special favor or privilege 
by government, when, by taxing them, their means and capaci- 


ties for usefulness are diminished, is another refinement of the 
impudent, ignorant, and vulgar demagogues to delude, defraud, 
and oppress the people. 

Their secret purpose is to complicate the tricks and obscuri- 
ties of faction fraud, so as to bewilder and cheat the people by 
compound taxations out of their hard earnings and honest sav- 
ings, to gratify their sordid and venal appetites. 

Every meal and all the shelter and covering given to the 
hungry, the orphan, the sick and infirm, by the hand of charity, 
leave that much less for the public to pay for. 

Every person restrained from evil, and led into and encouraged 
to follow the paths of virtue and religion, diminishes the bur- 
thens of the depravity and crime resting upon the community, 
increases the industry, and strengthens the moral and physical 
resources of society. 

The wants and occasions of millions are thus supplied by the 
hand of benevolence, instead of being taunted and soul-smitten 
by the grudging and hired minions of the law. 

Thousands are instructed through all the courses of learning 
and science, in the endowed colleges and schools, not by igno- 
rant politicians, but by competent and refined scholars. 

Is it not a false and fraudulent sophistry, that the means 
voluntarily granted by the public, and the donations, devises, 
and contributions voluntarily bestowed by individuals for sus- 
taining the health and lives, enlightening the minds and puri- 
fying the hearts, of man; that the purse and the scrip, the 
books of songs and music and prayers, and the holy Gospels, 
the churches, the altars, the tabernacles for God's worship, and 
the sepulchres of the dead, should not escape the taxation fangs 
of the politician? 

They insolently assume that these charitable and laudable 
objects of gratuitous and pious foundation, conducted for ages 
by the brightest and purest men that live, have no agency in 
ameliorating and sustaining the physical and moral exigencies 
of the human race. 

"Whereas they are the conservative elements which sustain 
the entire fabric of social order and security. 

If the politicians had thrown all their extortions by taxation 
into these safe and honest channels of wise and judicious ap- 
propriation, very many of the riots, conflagrations, election, 
judicial, legislative, and executive outrages which have degraded 
this country for several years past would have been averted. 


In this country, as there is no established connection between 
the government and the church and the institutions referred to, 
the politicians have a fair chance at the people, without any 
temptation or occasion to do it under pretensions of religion ; 
and it is amusing to see how they revel in open profanity. In 
countries where all these objects are under government super- 
vision — and it becomes the interest of the rabble to join 
them — it is amusing to remark the swelling congregations of 
devout and solemn rogues. 

There has never before now been so fair a chance for the 
undisguised development of the real materials which govern good 
and bad men as there is furnished by the wise discrimination 
here made between politics and religion. It has placed both 
parties, the good and the bad men, in solid column, face to 

The latter resist all the arts which education can supply, and 
all the power which brutal force can employ, and criminal 
public sympathy can furnish, and with no opposition to en- 
counter, are waging the most sanguinary war upon the ardor, 
industry, and religion of the country. 

It is this latent influence, perhaps, that explains the reason 
why the elder Adams remarked, after a six weeks' visit to one 
of the largest cities in the country, that he had not during his 
whole stay met one public man with unaffected good manners. 

Holding an elevated office, he was, of course, surrounded by 
political Shylocks, whose habits and manners are impelled by 
their selfish propensities, and who are never influenced by the 
purifying restraints of decorum, morals, and religion. 

As to graveyards, every man dies with the hope, at least, 
that he will be decently buried and let alone. The World's 
Convention would unanimously say amen to this, although no 
more respect has ever been paid by the rabble to a dead than 
to a living body. Everything bends to their rapacity. The 
Egyptians embalmed, mummied, and carefully packed away 
their dead, to be used in after ages for fuel and clap-trap shows 
for the ignorant. Some have made bonfires of their dead. 
Perhaps this is the best way to keep them from being seized by 
politicians. The friends of the dead soon scatter and die too ; 
the graveyards get full, and no brimful eye or loving heart is 
left to watch them. The bailiff comes; the dead man can't 
give him black mail. The tax is levied, the grave is sold, and 
the vendee makes manure and merchandise of the land. 


The savages do not tax, but sacredly cherish and revere the 
tombs of their dead. 

No government has ever indulged in the brutal luxury ot 
taxing a graveyard. ~ 

The bad manners of England, as to taxation, will be found in 
the following extract. Hitherto, they have not taxed the dead, 
an example, it seems, their descendants in this country are not 
inclined to follow. 


In the Edinburgh Review is an article upon Dr. Seybert's 
statistics of this country. The article consists principally of an 
abstract of the principal statements in the book. In the course 
of the article, is an admonition to us to abstain from martial 
glory, if we would avoid taxation, for the writer had no idea 
that we were so in love with taxation that we would increase 
our taxes without any intention of enhancing the revenue. — 

" We can inform Jonathan (says the Reviewer, for so able a 
writer cannot abstain from the childish humor of applying to 
us a nickname) what are the inevitable consequences of being 
too fond of glory. Taxes upon every article which enters into 
the mouth, or covers the back, or is placed under foot — taxes 
upon everything which is pleasant to see, hear, feel, smell or 
taste : taxes upon warmth, light, or locomotion — taxes on every- 
thing on earth, and the waters under the earth — on every 
thing that comes from abroad, or is grown at home — taxes on 
raw materials — taxes on every fresh value that is added to it 
by the industry of men — taxes on the sauce which pampers 
man's appetite, and the drug that restores him to health — on 
the ermine that decorates the judge, and on the rope which 
hangs the criminal — on the poor man's salt and the rich man's 
spice — on the brass nails of the coffin, and the ribands of the 
bride — at bed or at board, couchant, levant, we must pay! 
The schoolboy whips his taxed top — the beardless youth 
manages his taxed horse, with a taxed bridle on a taxed road; 
and the dying Englishman, pouring his medicine, which has 
paid seven per cent., into a spoon that has paid fifteen per cent., 
flings himself back upon his chintz bed, which has paid twenty- 
two per cent., makes his will on an eight pound stamp, and ex- 
pires in the arms of an apothecary who has paid a hundred 
pounds for the privilege of putting him to death. His whole 
property is then taxed from two to ten per cent., besides the 


probate. Large fees are demanded for burying him in the 
chancel : his virtues are handed down to posterity on taxed 
marble ; and he is then gathered to his fathers to be taxed no 
more !" 

These are objects of direct taxation. 

This is an art, like all the other plots of faction. They call 
it a science of government, but it is no more a science than the 
game at cards by which cheating is plausibly and secretly per- 

By indirect taxation, under the disguise of imports upon the 
productions of foreigners, and under the pretext of encouraging 
and equalizing the exigencies of commerce and revenue, mil- 
lions are extorted from home consumers. 

Judicious protection is a cardinal duty of government. In 
this country, it has been a subterfuge for monopoly and oppres- 
sion ; not only by the politicians who raise by it, and squander 
immense revenue, but by incorporated combinations, who, under 
cover of fictitious capital and credit, and desperate experiments, 
frighten and drive from the field of industry individual enter- 

If these incorporated and pernicious monopolies were abo- 
lished, and producing and manufacturing activity were left free, 
the competition would be so lively and healthy in its activity as 
to prevent the burthen of high prices falling on consumers. 

The result would be that, however high the tariff on import- 
ations might be, even if it went to interdictions, it would not 
fall on the consumers, and the wealth, industry, and resources 
of the country would be augmented. 

If this wise and judicious policy of protection by tariff on 
one hand, and the stimulation of individual enterprise by keep- 
ing down reckless and irresponsible corporations and combina- 
tions on the other hand, had been adopted by the government of 
the United States at its commencement, and adhered to up 
to this time, there would not have been such a pernicious taste 
for foreign luxuries excited, nor any underhand impositions of 
double prices upon consumers; and an immense field would 
have been thrown open for honest and profitable employment in 
all the departments of produce and manufacture; so wide in its 
emulations, and conservative and wholesome in its results, that 
the country now would be independent of the world, with an 
enormous surplus for foreign supply, and the capacity for the 
employment of the largest carrying marine of any other nation. 



These two plain and simple elements of practical national 
policy and prosperity, so often and ineffectually urged, are 
worth more than all the visionary schemes of crafty and factious 


There can be no good manners without morality, nor morality 
without religion. No savage ever had good breeding. No 
pagan ever had pure morals. Both feel and know the essential 
worth of decency and integrity, but do not practice either, al- 
though they exact them from others as vanity or cupidity de- 

Religion, the love and fear of God, is the substratum of every- 
thing good. No charity, no charm in all creation, can find its 
spring in aught but God. No blur or blight of Heaven but 
comes from hell. 

Men sometimes scoff at religion to snub conscience ; women 
love religion. They almost all of them go to church, if not 
prevented by the men. They secretly influence most extensive 
works of piety in schools, prayer meetings, and private praise. 

They encourage all denominations, and revere true religion. 
They do not bicker about tenets and doctrines, but, by their 
bright examples, rebuke sin and persuade to every honorable 

There is no restraint upon man's evil passions like religion. 
It softens the hard heart, curbs the ferocious temper, humbles 
the pride, and imbues the soul with charity. 

All its aspirations are for the glorious employments of 
Heaven ; not for selfish and sulky avarice, but for free and 
cheerful benevolence ; not for cruelty, but mercy ; not for op- 
pression, but liberty ; not for lust or gluttony, but temperance 
and virtue; not for war and blood, but peace and joy; not for 
martial parades to provoke revenge and violence, and torchlight 
processions to encourage hatred and defiance, but for schools 
and Sabbath instruction for innocent and lovely children, 
churches, prayer, worship, concerts, lectures, social parties, 
temperance processions, songs, and harmless amusements for 

These refreshing and innocent excitements, prompted and 
governed by good manners and religion, stir up no bad pas- 

Man is a social creature, requires society and profits by it. 
Let him have it, however large and free, if pure. 



We are all prone to repine at our lot — To wish for what we have not— 
Miseries of idleness (extract from Burton) — Employment, secret of con- 
tentment — Maybe unfit for all but what we are at — Distinctions — Rich — 
Poor — Excelling — Popular notice — Difference in minds — Fitness — Power 
— Taste — Susan Nelson — Professor Morse — But few who have the intel- 
lect of Washington — Franklin — Lafayette — Moses — Julius Ca:sar — 
Luxury — The rich man — Opulence — Apathy — Comparisons — Old age — 
Learning is a work for life — Acquired by degrees — Napoleon in youth, &c. 
— Character — The causes of these secret aspirations — The mind — The 
soul — Brutes — Instinct — Passion — Impulse — Remorse — Reflection — 
Affection — Mental power — Religion. 

"Miseries of Idleness. — In a commonwealth where there is 
no public enemy, there is likely civil wars, and they rage upon 
themselves; this body of ours, when it is idle, and knows not 
how to bestow itself, macerates and vexeth itself with cares, 
grief, false fears, discontents, and suspicions; it tortures and 
preys upon its own bowels, and is never at rest. Thus much 
I dare boldly say; he or she that is idle, be they of what con- 
dition they will, never so rich, so well allied, fortunate, happy, 
let them have all things in abundance, and felicity that heart 
can wish or desire, all contentment — so long as he or she or 
they are idle, they shall never be pleased, never well in body 
and mind, but weary still, sickly still, vexed still, loathing still, 
weeping, sighing, grieving, suspecting, offended with the world, 
with every object, wishing themselves gone or dead, or else car- 
ried away with some foolish fantasy or other. And this is 
the true cause that so many great men, ladies, and gentlewomen, 
labor of this disease in country and city; for idleness is an 
appendix to nobility; they count it a disgrace to work, and 
spend all their days in sports, recreations, and pastimes, and 
will therefore take no pains, be of no vocation; they feed liber- 
ally, fare well, want exercise, action, employment (for to work 
I say they may not abide), and company to their desires; and 
thence their bodies become full of gross humors, wind, crudities; 


their minds disquieted, dull, heavy, &c. ; care, jealousy, fear of 
some diseases, sullen fits, weeping fits, seize too familiarly on 
them. For what will not fear and fantasy work in an idle 
body?" — Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, p. 86. 

"Occupation the best Cure for Discontent. — When you shall 
hear and see so many discontented persons, in all places where 
you come, so many several grievances, unnecessary complaints, 
fears, suspicions, the best means to redress it, is to set them 
a-work, so to busy their minds; for the truth is, they are idle. 
Well they may build castles in the air for a time, and soothe 
up themselves with fantastical and pleasant humors; but in 
the end they will prove as bitter as gall; they shall be still, I 
say, discontent, suspicious, fearful, jealous, sad, fretting and 
vexing of themselves; so long as they be idle it is impossible 
to please them. Olio quinescit uti, plus hahet negotii qudm qui 
nrgotium in negotio, as that Agellius could observe; he that 
knows not how to spend his time, hath more business, care, 
grief, anguish of mind, than he that is most busy in the midst 
of all his business." — Ibid,, pp. 868-9. 

We are naturally prone to find fault with and repine at our 

All children, little and big, think everything they see others 
have is better and prettier than their own things. 

We are also prone to imagine the pursuits of others prefer- 
able to ours. The laborer, mechanic, shopkeeper, and farmer 
fancies how superior to his are the occupations of professional 
life. He knows not of the monastic seclusion, solemn medita- 
tions and painful responsibilities of the priest, the incessant toil 
and cloistered solitude of the scholar, the perpetual and revolt- 
ing contaminations with vice and crime of the lawyer, the 
loathsome and disgusting employments of the physician, the 
wanderings and perils of the sailor and soldier, the uncertainty 
and duplicity of politicians, the hateful and hideous nightmare 
of vacant leisure. This principle is beautifully elucidated by 
the great Latin poet (Horace, Ode i.), and is the observation of 
every day's experience. 

"Aptitudes in Men. — It is very certain that no man is fit for 
everything; but it is almost as certain, too, that there is scarcely 
any one man who is not fit for something, which something 
nature plainly points out to him by giving him a tendency and 
propensity to it. Every man finds in himself, either from nature 


or education (for they are hard to distinguish), a peculiar bent 
and disposition to some particular character; and his struggling 
against it is the fruitless and endless labor of Sisyphus. Let 
him follow and cultivate that vocation ; he will succeed in it, 
and be considerable in one way at least; whereas, if he departs 
from it, he will, at best, be inconsiderable, probably ridiculous." 
Lord Chesterfield's Miscellaneous Tl oi-ks, vol. i. p. 65. 

The secret art of happiness is to be content; not to be listless 
or unambitious, but to employ our faculties for useful and well- 
timed emulation ; not to neglect, but discreetly encourage appro- 
priate enterprise. 

These aspirations should be restrained by prudence, and on 
no occasion suffered to ruffle the judgment. 

We might have been born idiots or Hottentots, and any point 
above that mark on the scale of existence is a prize in the great 
lottery of creation. 

Our natures may be specially adapted to our present position, 
and wholly unfit for a different sphere. 

However humble our lot, we may accommodate ourselves to 
it, and it is uncertain if this could be accomplished under dif- 
ferent circumstances. 

Hasty movements and sudden changes should be avoided, 
and no man can safely begin another trade or employment with 
which he is ignorant. 

Discontent is caprice and self-treachery. He who is dissatis- 
fied with his fate, if gratified might still be restless and grasp 
for more. 

There was a warrior who conquered all the world and wept 
for further conquest. 

All distinctions, except those resting upon virtue and talents, 
are artificial and speculative; matters of whim and fancy. 
Those poorer than we are think we are rich, and envy our estate 
with the same nervous anxiety that we covet the supposed wealth 
of others. 

So, too, as to every object of desire. The fables of the dog 
and the shadow, and the man and his goose, teach us that he 
who catches at more than belongs to him justly deserves to lose 
what he has; and that we are too prone to entertain a desire for 
things at a distance, which, if we had them, might work destruc- 

Happiness does not therefore consist in the possession of a 


particular thing. It is the mental satisfaction we feel for what 
we have which makes happiness. 

The weary laborer may feel a charm at eventide, in the sweet 
shadow of his humble cottage, that finds no place with the 
sceptered monarch in his gilded palace. 

Happiness is a creature of the mind, a child of the imagina- 
tion, a deity which may be enshrined in any heart and wor- 
shiped without idolatry. 

It is a cheerful sprightly god, and flies suddenly and swiftly 
from the lazy, the stupid, and the wicked; it cares not for 
riches, and loves steady work and harmless fun, and calmly and 
soberly will vindicate the wisdom of its theories by rational 
arguments and minute details. 

The clean, or dusty, or the sedentary, or laborious nature of 
an employment does not ascertain the respectability of its cha- 

Those whose engagements are sedentary and confined suffer 
for want of fresh air and exercise, while those upon the waters 
and in the fields suppose there is more comfort and ease in the 
seclusion of shade and shelter. Those engaged in the cleanest 
occupations, say the tailor, or cedar-cooper, might prefer the 
athletic exercise of the smith or the mason with their dust and 
mortar. All these are trifling and immaterial considerations, 
producing no abrasion to a mind not disposed to repine and fret. 

Whatever may be the self-denial and personal exposure of 
manly toil, if it does not affect the health, the spirit of industry 
will disregard it, and each should strive to excel in his own 
pursuit. These are the true sources of mental happiness, and 
lay the foundations of true fame and human glory. 

He who is more proficient in raising crops or cattle, in build- 
ing ships and houses, or making flour or cloth, than any other 
person is in the same pursuit or occupation, is the greatest man 
in his business. 

Mrs. Susan Nelson is the most distinguished spinner, and 
Professor Morse is the most exalted inventor, of this age; be- 
cause Mrs. Nelson spun more flax in one day than any woman 
ever spun before or since; and Professor Morse has more suc- 
cessfully discovered the control and practical use of electricity 
than any other man. 

It is wholly immaterial what the employment is, if it be 
respectable; perseverance in its pursuit verifies the maxim that 
" Practice makes perfect." 


The attainment of this conceded point in any sphere, me- 
chanics, agriculture, or science, secures acknowledged distinc- 

The same law of reason and justice governs all the relations 
of life, and embraces all the successful energies and moral as- 
pirations of man. 

Washington was not less illustrious as a soldier, patriot, and 
statesman than he was as a farmer, a gentleman, and a Chris- 
tian. Franklin was not more distinguished for scientific re- 
search and skillful diplomacy than for his surprising faculties 
of simultaneous mental and mechanical composition; the rapid 
translation of his thoughts with his types directly from his 
mind to his printing-press. 

This wonderful accomplishment was acquired by the intense 
and patient industry of an ignorant and fugitive soap-boy. 

Every man, with equal mind and industry, has the same 
chance for the attainment of all these objects; and every man 
of the same merits, if he does not reach the same points of ele- 
vation, is entitled to equal regard and admiration. 

If he is not known to so many as those more distinguished, 
he will be certain of the confidence and esteem of all good men 
who do know him; and he will enjoy the highest point of mental 
happiness, a positive and sure consciousness of his own worth. 

The exact amount or summit of popularity or fame is not 
so important to a contented mind as a well-founded sense of 
respect for our own virtues. We cannot all be governors and 
generals; and those with subdued and refined feelings, who 
have reached high places, have not the appreciation of their 
value which is entertained by the crowd. They feel distrust 
and modesty, rather than ostentation. Their duties involve 
great severities of mental toil, research, and public scrutiny, by 
which the lives of sensitive persons are tortured and abridged; 
and thousands, for these reasons, shrink from or decline office. 

If Washington, Jefferson, or Jackson, now covered with post- 
humous glory, could speak to us from the tomb, they would 
say, that the drawbacks to their fame far outweighed their joys. 

The desire to be extensively known is absurd. There is no 
meaning in the wish; it is ridiculous; and no one can give a 
good reason for it. 

The strongest proof of a man's good character is that he is 
not known. Persons of sound good sense, whose employments 
have incidentally or necessarily thrown them into public notice, 


always avoid and shun, rather than court, empty and tumultu- 
ous receptions, levees, and parades. 

General Washington submitted to them with great reluctance, 
and only yielded from their conceded propriety as a revolution- 
ary finale. 

Dr. Franklin, Mr. Jefferson, Mr. John Quincy Adams, Mr. 
Thomas H. Benton, and General Scott, and every other gentle- 
man of judgment and true pride who has been before the 
American people, have peremptorily declined to unite in these 
riotous displays. And the recollection may be appealed to in 
support of the assertion that no one who has used them has 
been distinguished for wisdom, or has been successful as a 

They are got up for an effect which they fail to produce. 

The succession of gorgeous pageantries, which were so rich 
and glorious from the time of the unanimous vote of invitation 
by the people and their representatives to General La Fayette, 
to visit, in the evening of his life, the early scenes of his patri- 
otism and suffering, until he left the country, was one grand 
and universal jubilee of thanksgiving for the commencement of 
a millenium in this refuge of persecuted man. 

They were songs of pure and pious joy. No looked for 
favors occupied the hearts of the millions who joined this 

There were more tears than laughter; it was a solemn festival 
of religious love and gratitude by the generations of a disen- 
thralled and delivered nation, with this last apostle and his 
venerable cotemporaries, for their guests, in the only revolution 
that has been wrought out, and its objects successfully achieved, 
under the overruling providence of Almighty God. 

Men widely differ in their faculties, and very few possess ex- 
traordinary powers for any one pursuit, much less special and 
extraordinary capacities for a number of occupations. 

The individuals referred to were amongst the few very great 
men that have lived. 

Moses, Julius Caesar, Newton, Washington, Franklin, Jef- 
ferson, are instances of intellectual glory, scattered with other 
luminaries over the arch of time, and outshining countless 
myriads of other lights as suns and twinkling satellites, with 
dimmer stars which decorate the skies. 

With affluence and ease, some imagine there is perpetual 
and certain joy. 


" Use of Luxury. — In the present imperfect condition of so- 
ciety, luxury, though it may proceed from vice or folly, seems 
to be the only means that can correct the unequal distribution 
of property. The diligent mechanic and the skillful artist, who 
have obtained no share in the division of the earth, receive a 
voluntary tax from the possessors of land; and the latter are 
prompted by a sense of interest to improve those estates with 
whose produce they may purchase additional pleasures." — Gib- 
bon, vol. i. p. 87. 

"In a civilized state, every faculty of man is expanded and 
exercised; and the great chain of mutual dependence connects 
and embraces the several members of society. The most nu- 
merous portion of it is employed in constant and useful labors. 
The select few, placed by fortune above that necessity, can 
however fill up their time by the pursuits of interest or glory, 
by the improvement of their estate or of their understanding, 
by the duties, the pleasures, and even the follies, of social life." 
— Ibid., vol. i. p. 357. 

This he contrasts with the life of the barbarians. 

The mind readily draws and lavishly embellishes such a pic- 
ture. It is, for example, of a newly-married pair, young in 
health, refined and rich, of pure lineage, and spotless reputation, 
surrounded by luxury and friends, to gaze upon them through 
a long life of ease and happiness, and fancy over all their golden 
days of joy and peace. To feel the certainty that this bright 
and dazzling mirror is no delusion, and to contrast its shining 
glories with the dull obscurity of poverty and manual toil. 
This is crushing to the eager wish, and snubs the panting hope 
as does the sudden bit, the spurred and rampant steed. 

Covetous appetites are planted in our nature, and nourished 
up to madness, by being doomed to drudge like brutes for 
bread before the transparent gates of Paradise. 

All the curse on man would seem in this to be fulfilled. Yet 
reason bids restless poverty repine no more, but listen to the 
fretful murmurs of this opulent and idle neighbor; to mark 
his listless days and sleepless nights, his hunger surfeited, 
and sated thirst, his vacant eye, and ear, and thought, his never- 
ending eagerness for something new; his torturing temptations, 
his innate humiliation for his useless existence, his instinctive 
shame to hear the clamorous shouts of free and manly labor 
scoffing his effeminate imbecility; his pampered frame, nervous 
irritability, precarious health, uncertain life, early death, dilapi- 


dated fortune, helpless degenerated children, his scattered and 
extinguished name and habitation. 

Reason and truth will thus brush down the radiant beams of 
borrowed burnish cast round this early picture of our hasty 
youth, and to the heart hold out the cbeering words of peace 
within, for him whose willing hands have wrought out for him- 
self an independent life, with health and strength, proud satis- 
faction, temptation baffled, green old age, triumphant death, 
and stalwart virtuous progeny, in habitations free, by equal 
laws forever fastened to their country's soil. 

"Luxurious Selfishness. — He sits at table in a soft chair at 
ease, but he doth not remember in the meantime that a tired 
waiter stands behind him, an hungry fellow ministers to him 
full; he is athirst that gives him drink (saith Epictetus) ; and 
is silent whiles he speaks his pleasure; pensive, sad, when he 
laughs. Pleno se proluit auro; he feasts, revels, and profusely 
spends, hath variety of robes, sweet music, ease, and all the 
pleasure the world can afford; whilst many an hunger-starved 
poor creature pines in the street, wants clothes to cover him, 
labors hard all day long, runs, rides for a trifle, fights perad- 
venture from sun to sun; sick and ill, weary, full of pain and 
grief, is in great distress and sorrow of heart. He loaths and 
scorns his inferior, hates or emulates his equal, envies his su- 
perior; insults over all such as are under him, as if he were of 
another species, a demigod, not subject to any fall, or human 
infirmities. Generally they love not, are not beloved again; 
they tire out others' bodies with continual labor, they them- 
selves living at ease, caring for none else, sibi nati; and are so 
far many times from putting to their helping hand, that they 
seek all means to depress, even most worthy and well deserv- 
ing, better than themselves, those whom they are by the laws 
of nature bound to relieve and help, as much as in them lies ; 
they will let them caterwaul, starve, beg, and hang, before they 
will anyways (though it be in their power) assist, or ease : so 
unnatural are they for the most part, so unregardful, so hard- 
hearted, so churlish, proud, insolent, so dogged, of so bad a 
disposition. And being so brutish, so devilishly bent one to- 
wards another, how is it possible but that we should be discon- 
tent of all sides, full of cares, woes, and miseries?" — Burton's 
Anatomy of Melancholy, p. 110. 

Just in proportion to the stock of good sense and sound judg- 
ment is the heart at ease as to the multitude of grades and 


degrees in mind, means, and position making up the extremes, 
and filling up the intermediate spaces of existence. 

The meutal capacities vary in their strength and tendencies, 
as much as the taste and choice for place, and change from the 
humblest efforts of the infant mind to the refinement of art 
and the creations of genius, from the contented rustic to the 
roving mariner, from penury and want to health and luxury, 
the meal-satisfied beggar and the unsated miser, the slave and 
the monarch, the contented eunuch and weeping Alexander. 

Who can gaze on all these wonderful dispensations, the mys- 
teries and magnitude of the moral and material world, and not 
be smitten down with humility and thankfulness, for any place, 
however humble, in this wonderful majestic panorama of God's 
glory, and acknowledge his infinite bounty in giving us talents 
for any one of the innumerable pursuits which his infinite 
providence has ordained, in the division of labor amongst his 
rational creatures? 

There may be mental happiness with great bodily sufferings. 
Persons afflicted with acute and stubborn diseases, griping 
poverty, and cruel captivity, may possess faculties for endur- 
ance, resolution, and religious confidence so strong, as to hold 
a triumphant and unsubdued serenity of soul. These instances 
of intellectual power are rare, for our temperaments are impa- 
tient and restless; and the emotions of the mind, and the sen- 
sations of the body, are so closely blended that they almost 
maintain a reciprocal control, so that we are apt in seasons of 
affliction to increase our sorrows by despondency and mourn- 
Adversity should stimulate us to resignation and religious 
faith, and, if sincere, the humblest efforts for the attainment of 
these blessings by the true believer will be mercifully en- 

The same great law of mental and physical dependence, 
which governs and sustains us in adversity, prevails amidst the 
blessings of health and prosperity. 

The impelling and mutual necessities of the sexes are no 
more important for their social and rational enjoyments, than 
the concurrent facilities of the body and mind are essential for 
the security of individual happiness and tranquillity. 

Upon the continued activity of both, within an appropriate 
sphere, suited to our strength and capacity, down to the sunset 
of life, depend the sources of true happiness. 



" If, happily, we are born of a good nature ; if a liberal edu- 
cation has formed in us a generous temper and disposition, well- 
regulated appetites, and worthy inclinations, 'tis well for us, and 
so indeed we esteem it. But who is there endeavors to give 
these to himself, or to advance his portion of happiness in this 
kind ? Who thinks of improving, or so much as of preserving 
his share in a world where it must of necessity run so great a 
hazard, and where we know an honest nature is so easily cor- 
rupted ? All other things relating to us are preserved with 
care, and have some art or economy belonging to them; this 
which is nearest related to us, and on which our happiness de- 
pends, is alone committed to chance : And temper is the only 
thing ungovcrned, whilst it governs all the rest." — Shaftes- 
bury's Characteristic*, vol. ii. p. 293. 

A wanton disregard of these connecting and mysterious con- 
structions of our physical and mental organs is instantly re- 
buked by the significant and fatal hand of Providence. They 
must mutually serve each other, and cannot separately and in- 
dependently exist without destructive consequences to both. 

Let man be chained by bondage or avarice, and he becomes 
a brute, and his mind a chaos, and both decay. 

If the mind feasts with avidity upon the charms of poetry 
or science, however rapturous or sublime, without exercise for 
the body, there soon will come apathy and wasted health, and 
both must perish. Sensual and voluptuous pleasures inevitably 
and speedily waste and banish life. 

Instances have often occurred of persons, whose pursuits were 
laborious and tiresome, suddenly relinquishing business and 
seeking relief in retirement and leisure, who have found them- 
selves insupportably perplexed, and have gradully sunk into 
listless and apoplectic extinction. 

As mid-day approaches, and experience has ripened, a careful 
and prudent discrimination may dispense with the heavy and 
trying portions of any employment or profession, and retain 
those parts which can be made convenient, and the familiar and 
accustomed pursuit of which may be used commendably to fill 
up time and comfortably occupy the body and the mind. 

The great error into which we fall is the headstrong resolu- 
tion formed in youth for sudden and speedy affluence, and sub- 
sequent repose and luxury. The impetuous eagerness for this 


gilded prize too often precipitates its followers into ruin and 
despair: and if the perilous adventure is crowned with success, 
its consummations are realized amidst spasmodic excitements, 
uncongenial and inconsistent with the listless indulgences and 
unexciting relaxations of retirement and leisure. 

The constant, temperate, and moderate occupations of the 
mind and body are essential to human happiness. 

This is an undeniable law of our nature. Its practical illus- 
tration is demonstrated by misery and ruin for the listless and 
idle, and grace and glory for the thrifty and industrious. 

Just so far as we may advance in any lawful desires or 
wishes from the sphere we are placed in, by patient and legiti- 
mate means, without wrong to ourselves and others, we may go 
with safety, but the moment we break this law, we are in perilf 
and the world is as full of fugitives and malefactors from the 
primary paths of discretion and prudence as hell is said to be 
of penitent sinners. 

There is no reason why every man should not make choice 
of a learned profession, or any other lawful occupation. No 
one has a right to criticise upon aspirations, however extrava- 
gant. Surprising results have come from humble undertakings. 
The triumph of mind and patient industry over circumstances, 
with Franklin and others, are examples of genius and perse- 
verance, which prove the power these human qualities have 
over circumstances. 

But there is not one human being in ten thousand who has 
the mind of Franklin. It is intellect, not luck, that produces 
these triumphant changes; and the rock upon which we too 
often split is in an over-estimate of our ability, or in the 
ignorant conclusion that the means by which professional and 
mental elevation is attained are artificial; that it is only neces- 
sary to get legal permission to put up the tin of " Doctor," or 
" Attorney at Law," in order to acquire the coveted rank and 
position of others. If the lazy shoemaker, tailor, or carpenter 
were to witness this propensity inverted, to see a doctor mend- 
ing his boots, or a lawyer cutting out a coat, he would ridicule 
the absurd effort. And yet these men aspire to be convey- 
ancers, lawyers, and justices, and place on their shutters 
" Alderman" "Deeds, wills, and other leyal instruments drawn 
here" and advertise to do without knowledge or skill the 
things which require education, teaching, and experience, just 



as much as the " art, trade, and mystery" of making a coat or 
a shoe. 

Let such men go into the professions after they arc fit, if 
they desire to do so, but not without a suitable preparation, or 
they must be quacks and pettifoggers, and hold a degraded 
condition, without one tithe of the character they had in their 

To know that we hold rank but with the mean, is crushing 
to the spirit. To be laughed at by those we have left, where 
we might have held a respectable position, and to be cut and 
shunned by those we profess to belong to, is humiliating. 

What is the mortification and chagrin of a quack doctor for 
others to know that he has crippled or lost a patient from 
ignorance ! How does he feel as he passes the averted eye or 
scornful look of an educated and successful physician, who re- 
fuses to hold professional consultation with him ! 

How deep must throb the heart of an ignorant, half-educated 
lawyer, when he finds himself estopped by pleadings he does no*: 
understand, blocked in the face of a court and jury by the 
skill of his antagonist, and afterwards insulted by his client for 
stupidity and ignorance ! 

Both have very many opportunities to hide their ignorance, 
and to cheat, neither of which would be done except by a 

Professional delinquency is so palpable, especially with a 
lawyer, that want of learning is soon detected, and the pre- 
sumptuous pretender, however noisy and obtrusive, is speedily 
put down upon the roll of fools and rogues, from whence he 
can never escape or be crossed off. 

Singular instances of this restless spirit and its consequences 
are seen in the eagerness with which persons rush into the pro- 
fessions without previous preparation. 

The lazy mechanic, or the impudent and broken tradesman, 
sees a doctor riding about to his patients, or a lawyer trying a 
cause in court, and amuses himself with the delusion that these 
are easy and conspicuous occupations, by which one can always 
be in company and live in affluence. 

They do not pause to reflect that neither of these professions 
can be honorably or honestly embarked in without a primary 
collegiate and a scientific course of studies that should consume 
the whole period of minority. 

No man can be suitably qualified for the office of instruction, 


minister of the gospel, principal of academy, professor of col- 
lege, lawyer or doctor, without a full and thorough course of 
educational discipline and drill, from the time he is able to say 
his A B C's until he has reached maturity. 

With all these advantages, no man can be more than fit to 
take stand with respectable cotemporaries, and, with becoming 
ability and skill, acquit himself to his patrons. 

Can any one find himself more effectually rebuked and hu- 
miliated for his restless folly in superficially translating him- 
self into the iron harness of a learned profession than to dis- 
cover — too late, alas ! for all his manly sensibilities — that, instead 
of ease and comfort, he is doomed to a life of drudging, rivalry, 
and competition ? and that, instead of pleasant opportunities 
for personal display, every professional effort is checkmated and 
exposed by the skillful dexterity and refined accomplishments 
of an unsparing and triumphant adversary? 

And it is no excuse for ignorance to assume these efforts of 
learning upon the ground of want of means to obtain an edu- 
cation, any more than it is consistent to murmur at our inability 
to hold a ship or a farm for lack of capital. 

Patient industry and saving will acquire one, perseverance 
and genius will accomplish the other; and he who attempts 
banking, or professional responsibility, upon speculation and 
without stock, must look for bankruptcy and humiliation. 

Success in both is by slow and legitimate steps, in taking 
which, the mind and judgment become adapted to the object, 
without which the effort is as absurd as the result is disastrous. 

Napoleon is said to have aspired to a crown in early life. If 
he could have obtained it then, he would have passed into the 
tutelage of a Regent, and never gained, perhaps, the intellect- 
ual force for which, by a succession of desperate struggles, he 
subsequently was eminent. 

A citizen of the United States, who recently died, possessed 
of several millions, would not have husbanded his treasures 
with so much care and thrift, if, instead of its acquisition by 
slow and gradual steps, he had found it at his feet, when his 
whole stock and estate were limited to a single jar of prunes. 


" If it was necessary here, or there was time to l'efine upon 
this doctrine, one might further maintain, exclusive of the 
happiness which the mind itself feels in the exercise of this 


virtue, that the very hody of man is never in a better state 
than when he is most inclined to do good offices: that, as 
nothing more contributes to health than a benevolence of tem- 
per, so nothing generally was a stronger indication of it. 

" And what seems to confirm this opinion, is an observation, 
the truth of which must be submitted to every one's reflection 
— namely — that a disinclination and backwardness to good is 
often attended, if not produced, by an indisposition of the ani- 
mal as well as rational part of us : — so naturally do the soul 
and body, as in other cases so in this, mutually befriend, or 
prey upon each other. And, indeed, setting aside all abstruser 
reasoning upon the point, I cannot conceive but that the very 
mechanical motions which maintain life must be performed with 
more equal vigor and freedom in that man whom a great and 
good soul perpetually inclines to show mercy to the miserable, 
than they can be in a poor, sordid, selfish wretch, whose little, 
contracted heart melts at no man's affliction; but sits brooding 
so intently over its own plots and concerns as to see and feel 
nothing; and, in truth, enjoying nothing beyond himself." — 
Sterne's Sermons, vol. i. p. 80. 

The foregoing remarks describe some of the causes of mental 
discomfort and happiness in the social relations. It will be 
found that they have a wider sphere of action, and hold more 
control over our conduct and characters, than is supposed. 

They are shut up in the secret recesses of the heart, and 
give impulse to almost every act of our lives, however other 
reasons may be ostensibly given for them. 

The hidden source of these mental impulses is the soul, tbe 
spiritual, rational, and immortal substance in man, which dis- 
tinguishes him from brutes; by which he is enabled to think 
and reason, and is rendered a subject of moral government. 
It is the understanding, the intellect, the vital principle, the 
mind, the mental faculty, the seat and source of intention, pur- 
pose, design, inclination, will, desire, opinion, memory, intelli- 
gent power, thought, affection, and grace. 

Man is born without innate ideas. The rudiments of all 
knowledge are communicated to him by sensation. The mind 
derives knowledge from observation and experience. The 
senses convey into the mind distinct perceptions, such as color, 
heat, cold, figure, &c. ; and those things are called sensible 
qualities. The notions or ideas acquired in this way are called 


sensible knowledge, and the source of that knowledge is termed 

The other fountain which experience furnishes the under- 
standing with knowledge is, that attention we can give to 
the operations of our own minds, when employed about those 
ideas which were originally suggested by objects of sense. 
When the soul reflects on these, we are furnished with a set 
of notions entirely different from the ideas of sense — such as 
perception, thinking, doubting, believing, reasoning, knowing, 
willing, and all the different energies and passions of our 

The mind does not seem to have any ideas or notions but 
those which it obtains by sensation and reflection. These are 
the sources and first materials of all knowledge. 

This may be considered as the maturity of intellect, and then 
it should be strengthened by useful knowledge and experience, 
carefully cultivated by industrious research and habits of close 
thinking. This is true mental and moral education; it is within 
the reach of every one with moderate mental capacities, whose 
true pride of character is above his frivolous and brutal appe- 
tites; and from these sources alone is mental happiness to be 

This course of private education opens and invigorates the 
understanding, strengthens the judgment and the memory, 
controls the eccentric and vacillating excitements of temper, 
refines the emotions of the heart, and settles the mind down 
with rational and intelligible conclusions, and prepares us to 
meet without alarm the severest exigencies of life, and arms the 
soul with hope-and faith for death and eternity. 

Without going any further into an examination of this sub- 
ject, it is clear, from these acknowledged metaphysical laws, 
that man is born without any understanding; and that all his 
mental powers are acquired through the medium of his senses; 
and that these ideas and notions, which finally grow to what is 
understood to be mind, are communicated to the soul by sensa- 
tions which are acted upon by external objects, simultaneously 
with the power for moral discrimination. 

The notions conceived by the senses are the natural result of 
their being brought into action; for example, the idea of bitter- 
ness would not be excited by the taste of sweetness, nor the 
notion of pleasure by the sensation of pain; nor can the distinc- 
tions between right and wrong enter into the mind through the 


senses. This must be the work of intelligent power, a faculty 
of the mind which is gradually brought into action with its 
other powers : and experience has established that these faculties 
are governed by their own secret impulses, and not by any innate 
sense of right or wrong. 

The process of these moral and mental inductions is referred 
to, to show their simultaneous action upon the soul, and to show 
also the moral responsibilities that fall upon us at the first dawn 
of reason. 

For that which occurs before the mind has sufficiently acquired 
the rudiments of knowledge we are not accountable; but after 
we have obtained sufficient information to comprehend the will 
of the Creator, and to understand the distinctions between right 
and wrong, there is no further probation of irresponsibility; 
good and evil are set before us, which are as susceptible of dis- 
crimination as tangible objects, and we are accountable for our 

An infant will detect the difference between heat and cold, 
and sweet and sour, before it can speak ; and its capacities for 
moral discriminations are simultaneously exhibited by the exer- 
cise of the will. It manifests design, inclination, opinion, and 
memory, with the first germs of reason and instinct; and de- 
velops the passions of joy, grief, and resentment before it can 
speak or walk. Just to the extent that it has intelligence to 
conceive these thoughts, and enact these passions, does it under- 
stand that it is wrong to indulge them. The capacity to appre- 
ciate a good act is as strong as the ability to understand and 
perpetrate a bad action. This is unquestionably true, if there 
is mind sufficient to know them apart. If there is not under- 
standing enough to make this discrimination, then the animal 
is just so far human as the functions are concerned, and perhaps 
no further. 

The power of speech is no evidence of mind. Natural fools, 
who will clutch fire, can talk; and possess, with the subtilty 
and craft of some brutes, the plausible appearances without the 
realities of intellect. 

Brutes learn the use of letters and figures, and understand 
the meaning of words, although they have not the power to 
articulate them. Dogs and horses will lie down, and rise up, 
and fetch and carry as bid; and dogs will spell words and make 
numbers, with loose letters and figures. Dogs too are obviously 
influenced by affection, in which they display wonderful intelli- 


gence by acts of fidelity; all of which is short of the powers of 
intellect, but which is equal, and sometimes superior, to the 
understanding possessed by human beings; and wherever this 
standard of thought is found — where there is no capacity to 
appreciate the distinctions between right and wrong, there can 
be no intelligent power; it is but mere instinct, without the 
vital or spiritual principle of the soul; and the animal passions 
hold entire dominion. 

It is admitted, that brutes give no indications of immortality. 
Dean Sherlock says: "For though we allow them to be imma- 
terial, they have no natural indications of immortality; they 
have no happiness or pleasures but what result from, and depend 
on, their bodies : and therefore, however God disposes of them 
after death, as far aswe can judge, they are notcapable of any life 
or sensation when they are separated from this body." — Immor- 
tality of the Soul, p. 112. 

If this proposition is true, it inevitably leaves all human 
beings, with similar mental limitations and restrictions, upon a 
footing in this respect with brutes. Perhaps it is so. If this 
question could be solved by giving dumb beasts the gift of 
speech, it would be found, perhaps, that some of them hold a 
higher intellectual rank than some of our own race. 

It will be seen, therefore, that man is much more controlled 
and managed by his own will, and much more responsible for 
his own actions, than he is willing to acknowledge. His rest- 
less and inconsistent temper makes him deny his guilt and 
shift it upon others. If he cannot read and write, he is too 
stubborn to learn ; if he is without a trade or a profession, he 
is too obstinate to acquire them; if he is poor, he is too lazy 
to earn wealth by honest industry; if he is not in the sphere 
or condition of life he would aspire to, he will not patiently 
employ the means by which these preferments are obtained: 
but indulges his wicked temper in abusing his parents for his 
bad fortunes, and devours his peace in murmurs, jealousy, and 
bitterness. The pernicious springs of all these secret impulses 
are found with the brutal propensities. 


"Our passions were given us to perfect and accomplish 
our natures, though by accidental misapplications to unworthy 
objects they may turn to our degradation and dishonor. We 
may indeed be debased as well as ennobled by them ; but then 


the fault is not in the large sails, but in the ill conduct of the 
pilot, if our vessel miss the haven. The tide of our love can 
never run too high, provided it take a right channel." — A Col- 
lection of Miscellanies, hj John Norris, p. 326. 

The prevalence and strength of the passions vary; some- 
times one or more, and frequently all of them, appear to hold 
dominion — wine and lust being peculiar to youth ■ arrogance 
and ambition with middle life ; and avarice and hatred with old 
age. Some of the passions are more firmly seated than others ; 
but no one can claim exemption from their overruling sway. 
Whatever may be the repelling strength of conscience, or the 
efforts of dissimulation, the involuntary and secret influences 
of some or all of these passions constantly dart through the 

And they will hold entire control over us, without the most 
resolute and constant resistance. 

The mind is not only constantly under the influence of these 
vigorous passions, but it is perpetually exposed to temptations, 
stimulated by desire, encouraged by examples, and the certainty 
that all our thoughts are concealed. Everything within and 
around conspires to prick forward the selfish and licentious 
spirit of indulgence. 

The prevalence of these active and predominating propensi- 
ties holds this additional advantage over the conscience and the 
reason. Their strength and power are but seldom counteracted 
or confronted by the repulsions of intellect. While the pas- 
sions are vigorous, the mind, with most of us, is apt to be feeble. 
Perhaps there are ten to one of all the human race whose 
mental strength is but barely sufficient to provide against the 
common wants and exigencies of life; so that the secret pro- 
pensities and selfish inclinations preponderate, and perhaps 
really govern the conduct of the largest portion of mankind. 

Is it, therefore, difficult to explain or account for the immense 
amount of mental misery with weak and wayward man — the 
anguish, poverty, ruined health, blasted reputation, shame, re- 
morse, and despair produced by pride, ambition, anger, sloth, 
lust, debauchery, avarice, and crime ? 


Think twice before you speak or act once ; combine and put 
in requisition all the mental powers, resist the passions of the 
heart, and restrain the desires of the eye and the flesh ; cast 


out pride, anger, and lust; shun and stifle temptation; curb 
in and break down the appetites ; avoid and detest fashionable 
vices ; encourage and discipline the mind by habits of strict 
temperance and constant industry ; cheerfully and loyally blend 
the destinies of life with the inevitable and recuperative rela- 
tions of honorable marriage and glorious paternity ; fervently 
cherish and sustain the divine inspirations of the immortal 
substance of the soul, and humbly walk, and devoutly revere 
God. Do these plain works of righteousness and truth, per- 
severe, be resolute, and help, peace, security, and salvation must 
come as surely as there is trust to be reposed in the promises 
of the Almighty Creator of the universe. 




Jealousy— Hatred— Riots— Temper— Recklessness— Murmurs— Neglect 
of health— Peculiarities— Wilfully bad— Giddy— Idleness— Public opin- 
ion — Love of approbation — Vanity — Pride — Egotism — Violence — Self- 
destruction — Mind and morals not reciprocal — Should not be too social 
— nor too precipitate in marriage, &c. — Drinking — Gaming — Bad com- 
pany — Towns, &c. — Contradiction — Disputes — Discourtesy — Avarice has 
no redeeming quality — Ambition has — Suspicion — A tale of a lady and 
gentleman — Mutual hatred — Error — Temper — Oddities — Looks, &c. — 
Faults we censure we may have — Behavior — Shame — Derision — Fops — 
Woman — Honorable old age should be happy — Enthusiasts — Knaves — 
Tricks — Frauds — Denial of all settled laws — Science and literature — 
Genius — Psychologists — Indulgence — Lawyers — Opinions — Knowledge 
— Religion — Judicial abuse — Genius — Truths — References — Compari- 
sons — Intentions — The wayward world. 

We are the arbiters of our own destiny, morally and physi- 
cally, much more than we suppose ourselves to be. 

We neglect the discreet precautions for health and behavior, 
and then repine at the pain and injured health we have brought 
upon ourselves, and fret and worry at imaginary unkindness, or 
at resentments we have ourselves provoked. 

Purity of purpose is not incidental to intellectual strength or 
education; the impulses of a bad heart are inherent. They do 
not come from ignorance or feeble intellects. Some are almost 
helpless, and scarcely competent to execute the most simple 

They have no perception ; they cannot remember more than 
one thing at a time. If you tell them to bring you a cup and 
a spoon, they will only fetch the cup. 

They have no thrift or forecast, make no provision for winter 
or age, although they are sometimes affectionate and harmless, 
while those distinguished for wisdom are sometimes brutal and 

Man is a social being; but this propensity is like all other 


appetites, which should be held in proper check and control, 
and not indulged too much. 

The habit of perpetual and unlimited intercourse is unne- 
cessary and unprofitable ; it leads to familiarity and bickering. 

Mere chatter and gabble is trifling, indecent, and vulgar. 
There can be no self-respect or proper regard for others where 
this rudeness is reciprocated. The true source of personal dig- 
nity is not reserve, but circumspection; not austerity, but due 
and careful gravity; not ostentation, but benevolence. 

An irrestrainable love for company argues ignorance, a bar- 
ren intellect, and often leads the inoffensive and harmless into 

Instead of selecting a choice and suitable companion, with 
whom all spare time should be spent, in harmony, refinement, 
and mutual improvement, frugality and love, so as to secure 
the certain and permanent elements of safety, peace, and re- 
spectability, and make home a paradise, hasty, impulsive 
matches are made, or good ones neglected : other intimacies 
are sought, home becomes a boarding-place, an inn, where duty, 
not love, censure, not forbearance, rules; and societies, clubs, 
taverns, engine-houses, bowling saloons, volunteer companies, 
yacht excursions, fish-houses, race-grounds, and gambling rooms 
are resorted to, to fill up the deep and ever-widening void for 
mental occupation. 

Then come drinking, smoking, late hours, bad company, 
waste time and money, loss of character, and all the dark and 
ruinous train of discomforts, afflictions, and ruin, contrived by 
our own folly, and unjustly charged to chance and bad fortune. 

Infinite annoyance comes, too, from a spirit of contradiction, 
differing in opinion, and raising debates; telling persons they 
are wrong, and do not understand things; imputing to them 
ignorance and wilful error. 

Unless required for the necessary maintenance of truth, this 
is wrong, and never fails to make enemies. We may ourselves 
be in the wrong. Very often disputes involve nothing but 
mere opinions, which are entitled to equal respect. 

A discreet man will not be too emphatic or positive; no one 
can bear a flat rebuke. The aggressor will be shunned, and 
perhaps despised. 

Opinions are not strengthened by angry vindications; and it 
is vulgar to raise unnecessary disputes on any occasion. 

Avarice, and a desire for riches, is one of the most violent of 


all the passions, and develops itself with equal force in every 
grade of morals, mind, and knowledge. 

It is the most sordid propensity; and, where it is uppermost, 
generally overshadows every good quality. 

The rough corners of those in pursuit of fame and glory are 
sometimes concealed by genius and chivalry; but avarice would 
seem to go with no redeeming virtue. 

There is no limit to the mental torture we inflict on ourselves 
by the indulgence of unfounded suspicions. 

Persons of amiable and interesting qualifications, whose so- 
ciety might improve the sphere of mental happiness, in jealous 
moods, are suspected of pride and slight ; till, with other frets 
and flirts, we warm up discontent and hate, and fill the soul 
with bile and choler. These vile propensities aggravate the 
temper, increase exasperation, and make us miserable. Frac- 
tious and fretful dispositions banish all love, justice, and peace, 
and compel others, in self-defence, to shun them as they would 
a pestilence. 

An amiable but suspicious young gentleman was nervously 
excited at a group of men, who, as he passed them, whispered 
to each other, and eyed him sharply; he pursued one of the 
party for explanation, and was abashed to learn that they were 
admiring his noble and elegant bearing. 

An amiable gentleman and an estimable lady wilfully mis- 
understood each other. The gentleman imagined that the lady 
crossed his path at every turn on purpose to annoy and insult 
him with her arrogance and raillery. At length, at a funeral, 
where they casually met, he was introduced to and required to 
walk with her. 

This, too, he took for a trick to tantalize and vex him more. 

On their way, she recriminated on him the same device, and 
spiritedly submitted to his sense of honor, if his malice would 
never be appeased. 

Mutual explanations revealed how much they were alike, and 
that, without any cause, they had been dodging and hating each 
other most bitterly for moi - e than two years. 

Acquaintance wears away prejudices, even with those who 
are so weak and unjust as to feel unkind towards strangers. 
But still it is wrong to let temper and jealousy crook the feel- 
ings for an imaginary fault or personal dislike. 

Every one has his peculiarities ; ours may be as disagreeable 
to others as theirs are to us; and if mutual dislikes are to be 


cherished — if no allowance is to be made for matters which 
appear odd, but are not wrong, all the world will be by the 
ears, and strife, jostling, and savage rudeness will everywhere 

The same spirit of illiberality gets up a titter, and points at 
personal imperfection, squinting, a short or stiff leg, bald head, 
rotund body, being lame, blind, deaf, dumb, very tall or very 
short, or ugly, broken or hump-backed, bad teeth, defects of 
health or voice, or poverty, wholly unavoidable, which every 
one would avoid if he could, and no one is to blame for having, 
and any of which defects we may unconsciously have, while 
we are deriding others for the same thing. 

The rudest criticism sometimes comes from those who have 
the same faults, or meaner vices than those which they blame. 
This is a common failing, and if there be a fault, this illibe- 
rality brings it out. Our many faults claim mutual charities, 
and criticism is provoked upon ourselves by finding fault with 

Judge not, lest ye be judged. If all occasions for irritation 
are avoided, there is the greater security for peace and quiet. 
Guard the temper and the tongue; and let him that standeth 
take heed lest he fall. 

If the sociabilities of life are to be controlled and governed 
by the temper, the world will be overwhelmed with strife, con- 
tention, and bloodshed. 

By all these foolish and unhandsome practices we make others 
unhappy, excite their prejudices, provoke contempt and hatred, 
and make ourselves wretched with the delusion that we are per- 
secuted by the rudeness of others. 

Frivolous and giddy behavior occasions disrespect, and ex- 
cites suspicion of a doubtful reputation. How many ladies, 
from their light and equivocal conduct, force discreet and 
sober persons to doubt the purity of their intentions ? 

Worthy gentlemen obtain the reputation of fops and rowdies 
from their extravagant dress and supercilious and blustering 

This family of faults and foibles grows from sheer selfishness, 
from a settled love of self, and a dogged resolution to indulge 
our own whims and caprices in utter defiance of the wishes and 
feelings of others. 

Will any well-bred gentleman pretend to excuse to his 
mother the absurdity of frizzing and perfuming himself up for 



a ridiculous flirt and promenade, three or four hours in the 
middle of the day, when he should be about his business ; or 
for sitting with his feet up in front of hotels, jostling, talking, 
loudly swearing, drinking, and smoking cigars in the streets, 
running and lighting about with boisterous firemen, and being 
seen in company with profligates and gamblers J 

If these outrages cannot be justified, how is it that we can 
expect respectable persons will endure our society, and that we 
are not thus to become the authors of our own misery and 
shame ? 

Can any young man with these habits expect to be coun- 
tenanced by respectable females? And has he just cause to 
complain, if, by this conduct, he is banished from the intimacy 
and friendship of all decent persons ? 

These are fatal errors, which have plunged thousands into 
the most inextricable vexations and discomfort. While they 
loudly complain against the faults of others, they stubbornly 
perpetrate the same fatal follies. 

There is also an inherent propensity to get rid of and slur 
everything serious by the employment of 


The propensity for mental inaction and animal sloth is not 
more inveterate than an inherent reluctance to sustain or en- 
courage anything serious, rational, or just; and there is an 
impulsive eagerness, under any pretext, however absurd and 
ridiculous, to get rid of an appeal to the sober judgment for 
any good object; not so much for fun or joke, as for a pretext 
to shake loose from the sober dictates of reason, and the obli- 
gations of duty; especially if anything severe or cruel can be 
encouraged by it. 

In 1763, a member of the English House of Commons was 
opposed, in his support of an important revenue bill, in terms 
which required an answer, and he concluded his reply by 
putting to his opponent the question, "Tell me where," &c. 

This was repeated with strong emphasis two or three times. 

At this pause, his shrewd and heartless adversary, Mr. Pitt, 
rejoined in a musical tone, "Gentle shepherd) tell me where" — 
a line from a popular ballad, suggested, perhaps, by Allan Ham- 
say's play of "The Gentle Shepherd" — upon which there fol- 
lowed an uproar of loud and universal laughter. 

The result was that the subject of this joke, Mr. Grenville, 


lost his just position for personal dignity and influence, and to 
the day of his death, this excellent man was degraded by the 
contemptuous nickname of "Gentle Shepherd."— fl'5th vol 
COBBETT'S Pari, History, 1307.] 

If he had prepared a flattering servile address to the throne, 
instead of honestly trying to make the revenue pay the king's 
debts, he would not have been made the butt of this coarse and 
vulgar gibe. 

This unpardonable jest was used by the wags to prove the 
correctness of the adage, that ridicule is stronger than truth; 
and so it is with fools and knaves, because they hate the truth. 

The president of a bank laid before his board of directors a 
charge against the cashier for granting an unauthorized accom- 
modation to a genteel and popular operator, whose responsibility 
and private character, he said, were impeached by the police. 

"Who says so?" interrupted the cashier. 
_ " The mayor of the city told me so himself," said the pre- 

"Well, sir," rejoined the cashier, "did his honor the mayor 
tell you the reason why he had not redeemed his watch, put in 
the drawer here as three hundred dollars cash, two years ago, 
by your orders, to take up his note, endorsed by you?" 

This retort also vibrated the pretext chord of secret knavery. 
A thrilling vibration was loudly rung; and amidst the whizzing 
hum, baffled scrutiny was loudly laughed to scorn. 

The same object is sometimes accomplished by trick and 
plausible address. The president and some half dozen of a 
board of twenty-four directors of another bank, the rest being 
pliable chamberlains or solemn pageants, conspired a committee 
ostensibly for the oversight of exchanges, but really for covert 
speculations in produce, with the funds of, and for the bank if 
it failed (as it did turn out), and for themselves if it favorably 

The plot was well concealed for months, when rumor spread 
abroad this mighty scheme. At a meeting of this broad board 
of deep designs, after the current propositions had been ratified, 
one of the vamped-up caitiffs, prematurely swollen with recent 
sensations, rose, inquired if the session was literally secret, 
winked and writhed, and at length, in whispering anguish, said 
that he had been chased and persecuted, and even now, as he 
ascended the steps of the terrace, he had been dogged and har- 
pooned with this odious and vile report, that the committee was 


composed of high and honorable men, that they had no secrets, 
and no report to make, as their duties involved the mere super- 
vision of the issue and sale of drafts at points where others had 
no funds, and moved that a card be published by the president, 
indignantly denouncing this vulgar gossip as a flagrant and 
atrocious scandal upon the integrity of the board. To this im- 
passioned philippic the president instantly answered — "You 
are very right, sir ; yes, you are most eminently correct. I pray 
allow me, Mr. Green — no, I ask pardon, Mr. Verdant — suffer me, 
Mr. Verdant, to inquire what you say to the people, what answer 
you give to them, when they ask you these scorching questions ? 
What reply you make to them, sir?" 

" What answer I give them, sir? why, sir, I tell them I know 
nothing about it, and, sir, I do not know anything about it," said 
the blubber. 

"Well," rejoined the president, "Mr. Verdant, you are a 
prudent gentleman, for I am sure you do not know anything 
about it j and, therefore, you are most eminently correct. Mr. 
Verdant, always give them the same answer. Gentlemen, 
there is no further business before this board. Gentlemen, you 
have my thanks, gentlemen, for your attendance to-day; the board 
is adjourned, gentlemen." 

It is certain that this committee, of which the president was 
ex-officio the chairman, never did make any report, although 
they supervised the exchange of $21,000,000 out of that bank 
into their own pockets and vanished, true samples of adroit and 
accomplished rogues. 

Young folks become impatient and weary of home, and eager 
to find new society ; they push themselves among strangers, in- 
stead of cherishing the affections of their natural friends. 

Reliance for all exigencies of life must in the end be placed 
upon relations and family connections; it looks suspicious, and 
turns to a man's disadvantage, to find him receiving favors from 
strangers; whereas it appears better, and adds to one's respecta- 
bility, when sustained by relations. 

The causes which produce these opposite results are found 
in the behavior of relations and family connections towards 
each other in early life. 

Instead of cherishing a respect and preference for the society 
of parents and relations, young men and women, upon reaching 
mature age, slight and avoid them ; they seek out invitations 
from others, and, under covert pretexts, squeeze themselves into 
their society. 


On Christmas and New Year's days, and on similar occasions, 
instead of making convocations at some family fireside, where 
the natural reciprocations of kindred and blood may be cher- 
ished and confirmed, they scatter amongst strangers, and so 
these fountains of happiness are neglected, and soon dry up. 

The common judgment of young persons should teach them 
that the true sources of social happiness are only found with 
relations; and that it is indelicate in them to disturb it by 
their unwished-for visits upon strangers; that, however they are 
tolerated by the laws of civility, their presence gives occasion to 
contrast, embarrassment, and painful restraints to the fresh inter- 
course of domestic familiarity, the unaffected kindness and har- 
mony of parents and children ; that their tender and affectionate 
interchanges, recognitions, and delicate meetings, as they pass 
along the smooth current of household happiness, are checked 
and marred by the presence of gaping and critical sojourners. 

Mere calls, and visits of ceremony, which are confined to the 
reception-room, give ample opportunity for recognition, intro- 
ductions, and information. They conduce to the delicate cul- 
tivation of genteel and social interchanges, and facilitate the 
means of appropriate selections for parties, and other entertain- 
ments, according to the means and taste of those who take part 
in these fashionable and harmless reciprocations. 

All these matters are very well understood. They originate 
under special invitations, and close with the brief period appro- 
priated for their cheerful indulgence, leaving the family in its 
former privacy and repose; and with entire liberty to repeat or 
omit this formality, as their own private feelings may suggest. 

These safe and proper limits, prescribed by the well-settled 
usages of time, should be rigidly maintained; and families 
should not be disturbed by the intrusion of strangers, under any 
pretext, however plausible. No mistaken notion of politeness 
should suffer the sacred security of home to be interrupted by 
the footfall or the voice of a stranger. 

Parents and guardians should peremptorily forbid these gross 
intrusions upon their domestic peace. Mothers should not 
suffer their daughters to pay or receive visits which cast into 
the domestic circle these subtle and pernicious elements of dis- 

Young women and young men sometimes contract acquaint- 
ances at school, whose families are above or beneath their own. 
Upon going home, they forget that their education, which has 


cost their parents much lahor, expense, and anxiety, should be 
carefully brought back into the family stock for its mutual im- 
provement and advantage. Instead of making these honorable 
contributions to the pleasure of home, they sometimes become 
too proud and too indolent to work, and live, as their parents 
do, require expensive dresses and facilities for company, and, 
under trifling pretexts and frivolous pretences, are suffered to 
make long visits to families supposed to have better condition 
and more favorable appliances for show and company than they 
have; and thus their honored parents, and brothers and sisters 
are slighted, neglected, and deserted; their own homes are 
abandoned and desecrated. 

The object of educating children, which should never be 
given to them at boarding-schools, if it can be avoided, is not to 
give them a distaste for their homes, and to encourage a con- 
temptuous disposition for their relations; but the better to 
qualify them to improve the advantages and appreciate the 
blessings and comforts of home. 

The notion is too frequently assumed by children who have 
been to school, particularly at boarding-schools, that this sup- 
posed advantage or refinement has given them a claim to be 
exempted from the rustic and common-place employments of 
domestic life ; and if this propensity is not checked, then come 
rebellion, contempt of parental authority, idleness, dissipation, 
and sometimes ultimate ruin. 

The real object of this pernicious passion for visiting is a 
love of novelty and vapid indulgence. 

A disrelish for home and honest industry, and a desire for 
display, company, fashionable participations, intrigues, and 
match-making, principally stimulate females to these vagabond 

It is forgotten that by these forbearances their habits, tem- 
pers, and propensities are without protection; and that the 
purity of their principles is exposed to dangerous tempta- 
tions. They should be taught that the unsophisticated simplici- 
ties of their own homes, under the watchful eye of parental 
protection, is a realm of security for female honor, where the 
spoiler dares not come; that this is the appropriate and hallowed 
sphere for preliminating honorable marriage; that here no suitor 
can be misled or deceived; and that they have a guarantee for 
his sober, calm, and dependent sincerity. 

And they should learn that their affectations of consequence 

the Woof of woe. 119 

and obtrusive billeting upon strangers are vulgar and offensive, 
and that no lady of true pride, good sense, or independence 
will compromise her character for delicacy and good breeding 
by any other visits than those of mere ceremony, out of the 
sphere of her relations and family. 

Just in proportion as she treats with attention and regard 
her own kindred will she be esteemed by persons of true re- 
spectability, and secure to herself the proper and suitable oppor- 
tunities of safe and honorable marriage. 

There is no occasion for an incessant and tumultuous inter- 
course with strangers ; unnecessary and sometimes dangerous 
intimacies are formed by it; no good and much evil may come 
from it. Protracted visits with strangers blunt modesty, en- 
courage flirtation, pride, extravagance, gadding in and out at 
late and unseasonable hours, loud and rude conversation, loose 
deportment, flinging off hats and over-clothes upon the furni- 
ture in the best rooms, and using them for the untimely and 
noisy visits of transient acquaintances, who are wholly unknown 
perhaps to the family thus disturbed. 

It is a false notion of hospitality to encourage these perni- 
cious indulgences, which would not be attempted at home. It 
throws young ladies loose to their worst propensities, under the 
dangerous mantle of respectability. 

Almost all the seductions of females, married and single, 
occur from home, or in the absence of their husbands, parents, 
and brothers. 

This exciting and critical period of life — when the passions 
are impregnable, when all the mental and animal faculties are 
gushing into puberty, without experience, and prompted by 
unbounded confidence and self-will — most eminently requires 
the vigilant eye of parental constraint. 

Thousands of males and females have practiced deceptions 
from home, as to their fortunes, birth, rank, and connections, 
which there would have been no temptation or opportunity to 
perpetrate at home ; and thousands have made shipwreck of 
their marriages and character by these pernicious contrivances 
for imposition and fraud. 

No man or woman should think of taking a husband or wife 
from the swarm of sunshine butterflies and moonlight glow- 
worms that transiently floats before the youthful and bewildered 

Home, with all its sober realities, is the place in which they 


should be most intimately seen and known, before the solemn 
certainties of conjugality are dreamed of; and even there, where 
the mutual inspirations are more free from guile, the gloom of 
discontent too often follows the honeymoon of excitement. 

In vanity fair, in the whirlwind of routes, fashionable riots, 
and promiscuous gatherings, matches are apt to be formed under 
the influences of burning passions, or dazzling deceptions, and 
followed by inevitable disaster, and a total loss of character on 
both sides. 

There is no period of life that furnishes so many rich con- 
tributions to mental happiness as intelligent and honorable old 

The helplessness of infancy, the perils of youth, the untried 
experiments of maturity, and the anxieties of afterdife are now 
looked back upon with calm and profitable composure amidst 
the richest conception of social intercourse and the veneration 
and love so cheerfully and universally accorded to virtuous and 
amiable old age. 

How much there is of the past for intellective contempla- 
tions, and of the future for solemn meditation ! 

Millions born with us have perished from disaster, poverty, 
and shame, from all which we have escaped, perhaps, by being 
blessed with parental tenderness, early instructions, and moral 
culture, not afforded to those whose lives are now lost in the 
gloom of the past. 

If these merciful providences have armed us with better 
judgment and morality, and thus secured and prolonged our 
lives, there is infinite occasion for joy and gratitude. 

The exciting irritations of our wayward propensities are 
gone ; no more lust of the flesh to resist, or pride of the eye 
to contend with; no more burning wrath to quench, or bitter 
revenge to curb ; no restless ambition to control, or gnawing 
avarice to devour the heart; the consuming furnace of the pas- 
sions has gone out, and the spiritual and holy faculties of the 
mind are prepared for refined and elevated reflections. 

The baffled conscience, perplexed by hot blood and inflamed 
appetites, no longer disturbs our dreams with anguish and our 
souls with remorse. The past has taught us the bright rudi- 
ments of wisdom, and a quick capacity to appreciate its prac- 
tical solemnities; how that the animal indulgences are transient 
and destructive, that our wants are few and simple, and that 
the substantial foundations of human happiness are found in 


true knowledge, a reverence for God, and a well-founded reli- 
ance upon his mercy. 

Amidst the solemn plenitude and calm serenity of pure old 
age, there are most mercifully furnished, and never withheld, 
these benign and refreshing assurances. 

If there has been a resolute resistance to temptation, the 
sunset of life, which is the day-dawn of eternity, will be bright 
and rapturous; but if the conscience has been forced away by 
infidelity and guilt, the spasmodic and impotent lusts, com- 
bined with a constant dread of death, will banish hope and 
torture the soul with overwhelming horrors and despair. 

There is an immense number of persons whose moral obliqui- 
ties and mental vacillation render them unsteady, capricious, 
and dangerous. 

They agitate the peace and disturb the repose of society, and 
throw upon it grievous burthens by their wanton and pernicious 

As producers of public subsistence, they arc wholly useless ; 
and as profligate consumers of its supplies, they are a dead 

They excite and mislead the ignorant and thoughtless, and 
waste the time and the means of the well-disposed and indus- 
trious by artful demonstrations of wit and learning, plausible 
feuds, and skillful appeals to the credulity and restless passions 
of men. 

There are two classes of these frivolous and visionary enthu- 
siasts; those who act under the influence of ignorance and in- 
fatuation, and those who are prompted by sordid and sinister 

The first reject and deny the truth of all the settled laws of 
society. They will not consent to improve upon the established 
wisdom and sober experience of ages; but obstinately denounce 
and resolutely struggle to demolish them. 

The arduous researches and successful scrutiny by which the 
formation and inherent elements of the globe have been ascer- 
tained are presumptuously challenged by an absurd and pre- 
posterous system of pedagogue astronomy, denying the ascer- 
tained laws of celestial motion, and converting all the planets 
into oblong revolving cylinders. 

All the critical experience and practical wisdom of ages are 
superseded by a system of ridiculous quackery, professing to 


detect the secret emotions of the soul by phrenological develop- 
ments, and to remove bodily and mental maladies by occult 
gesticulation, mesmeric incantations, and supernatural con- 

These egregious villains are appropriately served up by 
Nichols, who says of them as follows : — 

" CONTORTIONS of inspiration. 

" Bayle says, there may be, and sometimes is, imposture in 
ecstatic grimaces; but those who boast of being inspired, with- 
out evincing by the countenance, or expressions, that their 
brain is disordered, and without doing any act that is unnatu- 
ral, ought to be infinitely more suspected of fraud than those 
who, from time to time, fall into strong convulsions, as the 
Sibyls did in a greater or less degree." — Nichols' Calvinism 
and Arminianism Compared, p. 264. 

Another school affect to slur and deride the rational litera- 
ture and science of this age, by contrasting them with the vul- 
gar ballads, coarse morals, and ignorance of former days; and 
insinuate that a superstitious belief in ghosts and witchcraft 
warms the imagination, and inspires the soul with more brilliant 
conceptions than the dull mental appreciations of these times 
can accomplish. 

They would discharge the obscene and revolting secretions 
of a dark age upon the better morals and elevated wisdom of 
this age. 

This is a prevalent propensity even with amiable men whose 
judgments have not been corrected by the conservative influences 
of an intercourse with the practical affairs of the world. 

By the "Evening Bulletin/' Mr. Dana is reported to have 
said, in a lecture delivered by him in Philadelphia, on the 29th 
of November, 1849, that 

" In the ballad age, subjects that were not poetic took that 
form. Hence we have the rhyming chronicles, and other writ- 
ings as sluggish as a marsh stream, and yet on whose banks a 
little bird oft alights and sings. The old poems, however dull, 
are always natural, and are interspersed here and there with 
exquisite thoughts. 

" The society of that time was more alive to poetry than the 
present. There are, it is true, more readers now, but there is 
a wretched race between time and mind, which is fatal to 


poetry. la those times, every cottage and castle had its min- 
strel, with such ballads as Chevy Chase, The Children of the 
Wood, &c. The mother sang them to her child, and this influ- 
ence, if well considered, will satisfy us of the susceptibility of 
the after man or woman. If in those times there was more of 
a terra incognita in the material world, there was less in the 
spiritual. This remark may seem to tend toward superstition, 
but it is a superstition more healthy than skepticism. There 
was profounder truth in that state of society, when witches, 
fairies, and dragons were believed in, than in the present, when 
knowledge scatters all illusions — when nothing is believed but 
what is comprehended. 

" ' Oh, fancy \ what an age was that for song !' 

" "When you stand with Macbeth and the witches on the 
heath, or hear Ariel in the air, or look on the brutish Caliban, 
do you doubt of their existence, or think they are got up only 
for scenic effect? In those times the flowers, the earth, the 
very stones had their mysterious virtues and influences, subject 
to be called into action by fancy and feeling. We find nothing 
of this kind now, even in an uneducated man, who has been 
brought up wholly in communion with nature. The social state 
has thus acted upon the poet." 

" The huge breaking up plough of improvement has passed 
over the earth, and crushed the daisy of the poet." 

" Modern poetry is the formal result of calculation, and is 
not spontaneous. The egotism of modern poets is produced by 
the too great tendency to philosophize on man and nature." 

These unschooled scholars would banish or implicate the 
wisdom, industry, and science of these times with bygone and 
exploded superstitions, and stigmatize the rational and practical 
knowledge of this day with the epithet of Materialism. 

There is a set — idle, lazy, desperate, and reckless — more sor- 
did and crafty, who, by knavery, monopolies, frauds, politics, 
and bigotry, would cheat, rob, and terrify the weak and timo- 
rous world out of its rich inheritance of peace and love. 

It is said that the Devil attacks the spirit through the flesh. 

" The powers of darkness," says Dr. Watts, in one of his 
sermons, " chiefly attack our spirits by means of our flesh. I 
cannot believe they would have so much advantage over our 
souls as they have, if our souls were released from flesh and 


blood. Satan has a chamber in the imagination ; fancy is his 
shop, wherein to forge* sinful thoughts, and he is very busy at this 
mischievous work, especially when the powers of nature labor 
under any disease, and such as affect the head and the nerves. 
He seizes the unhappy opportunity, and gives greater dis- 
turbances to the mind by combining the images of the brain in 
an irregular manner, and stimulating and urging onward the 
too unruly passions. The crafty adversary is ever ready to 
fish, as we say, in troubled waters, where the humors of the 
body are out of order." Vol. i. p. 49 (Leeds edition). 

Indulgence to these propensities does not seem to be of indi- 
vidual benefit or public profit : for as to toleration, 

"As to the thing itself,*' says Jeremy Taylor, " the truth 
is, it is better in contemplation than practice, for reckon all 
that is got by it when you come to handle it, and it can never 
satisfy for the infinite disorders happening in the government, 
the scandal to religion, the secret dangers to public societies, the 
growth of heresy, the nursing up of parties to a grandeur so 
considerable as to be able in their own time to change the laws 
and the government. So that, if the question be whether mere 
opinions are to be prosecuted, it is certainly true they ought 
not. But if it be considered how by opinions men rifle the af- 
fairs of kingdoms, it is also ascertain they ought not to be made 
public and permitted.'" 

And the mental metaphysics of man would seem to increase 
the perplexity of his mysterious character. 

lawyers' lives. 

"Their practice (the lawyers') may truly be called practice, 
and nothing but practice, for no state of life is so troublesome 
and laborious as theirs : such days of essoyn, such days of ap- 
pearance ; so many writs, so many actions, so many officers, so 
many courts, so many motions, such judgments, such orders. 
What throngs and multitudes of clients daily attend them ! I 
commend the wisdom of our forefathers, who, close by the hall 
erected a church, where they might take the open air, and find 
it as empty as they left the other peopled and furnished. 
How are they continually busied ! I could heartily wish 
that there were more minutes in the hour, more hours in the 
day, more days in the week, more weeks in the year, more years 
in their age, that at length they might find out some spare 


time to serve Gud, to intend the actions of nature, to take their 
own ease and recreation. For now they are over-busied in 
their bricks and their straw, to lay the foundation of their own 
names and gentility: that, teaching other men their landmarks 
and bounds, they may likewise intend their own private inclo- 
sures. Well fare the scholar's contentment, who, if he enjoy 
nothing else, yet surely he doth enjoy himself." — Goodman's 
Fall of Man, p. 171. 


Bishop Sanderson, in one of his sermons (vol. i. p. 361), 
touches upon " the great advantage or disadvantage that may 
be given to a cause, in the pleading, by the artificial insinua- 
tions of a powerful orator. That same flexanimis Pitho," he 
says, "and suadce medulla, as some of the old heathens termed 
it, that winning and persuasive faculty which dwelleth in the 
tongues of some men, whereby they are able not only to work 
strongly upon the affections of men, but to arrest their judg- 
ment also, and to incline them whither way they please, is an 
excellent endowment of nature, or rather (to speak more pro- 
perly) an excellent gift of God. Which whosoever hath received, 
is by so much the more bound to be truly thankful to him 
that gave it, and to do him the best service he can with it, by 
how much he is enabled thereby to gain more glory to God 
and to do more good to human society than most of his bre- 
thren are. And the good blessing of God be upon the heads of 
all those, be they few or many, that use their eloquence aright, 
and employ their talent in that kind for the advancement of 
mstice, the cmelling of oppression, the repressing and discoun- 
tenancing of insolvency, and the encouraging and protecting of 
innocency. But what shall I say then of those, be they many 
or few, that abuse the gracefulness of their elocution (good 
speakers, but to ill purposes) to enchant the ears of an easy 
magistrate with the charms of a fluent tongue, or to cast a mist 
before the eyes of a weak jury, as jugglers make sport with 
country people ; to make white seem black, or black seem white j 
or setting a fair varnish upon a rotten post, and a smooth gloss 
upon a coarse cloth, as Protagoras sometimes boasted that he 
could make a bad cause good when he listed ? By which 
means judgment is perverted, the hands of violence and robbery 
strengthened, the edge of the sword of justice abated, great 

11* & 


offenders acquitted, gracious and virtuous men molested and 
injured. I know not what fitter reward to wish them for their 
pernicious eloquence, as their best deserved fee, than to remit 
them over to what David hath assigned them (Psalm cxx.) : 
' What reward shall be given or done unto thee, O thou false 
tongue ? Even mighty and sharp arrows, with hot burning 
coafs !' " 


" Opinion deceives us more than things. So comes our sense 
to be more certain than our reason. Men differ more about 
circumstances than matter. The corruption of our affections 
misguides the result of our reason. We put a fallacy, by a 
false argument, upon our understandings. If the vitiosity of 
humor doth oft put a cozenage upon the radiancy of sight, so 
that it sees through deceiving eyes the false colors of things, 
not as they are, but as they seem — (peradventure choler hath 
given a percolation to the crystalline humor of the eye, or 
phlegme hath made an uneven commixture or thickness in the 
optic organ, or the like, by which means all is represented yel- 
low, or all seems black, or of the darker dye, that the sight re- 
turns to the common sense) — why may not men's understand- 
ings be likewise so deceived? As sure they are abused. For 
most men, yea, many of the higher form of brain, being in love 
with their own parts, or their credit, commit first the error, 
then undertake to make it a part of their resolution (rather 
than to recede from misapprehended or delivered untruths) to 
account it as a commencement of honor and maintenance of 
affected reputation, either to proceed to further obliquity, or at 
least to take up the stand with obstinacy. By ibis means have 
we not only lost much of our peace, but even the clear evidence 
of truth. How comes else such a gladiatory in the schools (to 
omit the pulpits), such challenges of the pen, such animosities 
in discourse, as if our natures were less inclinable to conversa- 
tion than to combat ? 

" Nor have things indifferent been hereby made the only occa- 
sion of the quarrel, of such division ; but overrun with mis- 
prision, and overcome by pertinacity, they set sail to the 
Anticyrae, go beside themselves; not only in falling from, but 
by putting the question upon the principles of reason, and the 
very fundamentals of religion. Whereby some unwisely think- 


ing to add to their stature, to become giants among men, have 
fallen less than the least of beasts; not retaining so much as the 
prudence of the bee; yea, coming short of the providence of the 
pismire; not arriving at the knowledge of the ox, for he knows 
his master's crib." — Sir William Denny's Pelicanicidium, 
p. 222. 

The effect of knowledge upon the mind is also found, as it 
were, to be a burthen, instead of a charm. 


"Knowledge is the greatest ornament of a rational soul; 
and yet that hath its troubles. Eccles. i. 18. For in much 
wisdom there is much grief, and he that increaseth wisdom in- 
crcaseth sorrow. It is not to be attained without great pains 
and difficulties, without laborious and diligent search, and vast 
perplexities; whether we consider the blindness of our under- 
standings, or the intricacy of things themselves, the many dark 
recesses of nature, the implications of causes and effects, be- 
sides those accidental difficulties which are occasioned by the 
subtilty and enlargement of error; the variety of intricate opin- 
ions, the many involutions of controversies and disputes, which 
are apt to whirl a man about with a vertigo of contradictory 
probabilities; and instead of setting, to amuse and distract the 
mind; so that much study is a wearisomeness to the flesh; and 
besides, it makes a further trouble to the soul, in regard to the 
more a man knows, the more he sees there is yet to be known; 
as a man, the higher he climbs, sees more and more of the way 
he is to go : and then, he that is versed in the knowledge of 
the world, sees abundance of mistakes and disorders which he 
cannot remedy, and which to behold is very sad; and by know- 
ing a great deal, is liable to abundance of contradiction, and 
opposition from the more peevish and self-willed and ignorant 
part of mankind, that are vexed because he will not think and 
say as they do, and they are very prone to censure, and con- 
demn the things they do not understand, for it is most easy so 
to do; whereas to pierce into the reasons of things, requires a 
mighty labor, and a succession of deliberate and serious thought, 
to which the nature of man is averse; and lazily and hastily to 
judge, requires no trouble: and were it not that it is a man's 
duty to know, and that his soul, if it have anything of great- 
ness and amplitude in its faculties, cannot be satisfied without 


it, it were a much safer and quieter course to be ignorant, 
Study and painful inquiries after knowledge do oftentimes ex- 
haust and break our spirits, and prejudice our health, and bring 
upon us those diseases to which the careless and unthinking 
seldom are obnoxious. Eccles. i. 13, 14, 15. J hare seen all 
the works that are done under the sun, and behold, all is rami//, 
and vexation of spirit; that which is crooked cannot be made 
straight, and that which is wanting cannot be numbered."— 
Timothy Rogers : A Discourse concerning Trouble of Mind, 
p. 327. 

Deep and profound research, it would seem, disturbs the 
faith, and staggers the belief of the purest men in the sacred 
truths of Revealed religion. 

Watts, on Everlasting Punishment, in his preface to the 
second volume of his discourses on the world to come, says : — 

"Were I to pursue my inquiries into this doctrine only by 
the lights of nature and reason, I fear my natural tenderness 
might warp me aside from the rules and demands of strict 
justice, and wise and holy government of the great God. 

"I must confess here, if it were possible for the great and 
blessed God any other way to vindicate his own eternal and 
unchangeable hatred of sin, the inflexible justice of his govern- 
ment, the wisdom of his severe threatenings, and the veracity 
of his predictions; if it were also possible for him, without this 
terrible execution, to vindicate the veracity, sincerity, and 
wisdom of the prophets and apostles, and Jesus Christ his son, 
the greatest and chicfest of his divine messengers; and then 
if the blessed God should at any time, in a consistence with 
his glorious and incomprehensible perfections, release those 
wretched creatures from their acute pains and long imprison- 
ment in hell, cither with a design of the utter destruction of 
their beings by annihilation, or to put them into some un- 
known world, upon a new foot of trial ; I think I ought cheer- 
fully and joyfully to accept this appointment of God, for the 
good of millions of my fellow-creatures, and add my joys and 
praises to all the songs and triumphs of the heavenly world, in 
the day of such a divine and glorious release of these prisoners. 

"But I feel myself under a necessity of confessing that I am 
utterly unable to solve these difficulties according to the dis- 
coveries of the New Testament." 

This is the absurd labyrinth into which we must be led by too 


much self-sufficient speculation upon the unrevealcd mysteries 
of Divine wisdom. 

St. Paul properly rebuked this profane scrutiny with the 
Corinthians, to whom he wrote, " Thou fool ! that which thou 
sowest is not quickened except it die." (1 Cor. chap. xv. 
ver. 6.) That is to say, that we are not in this state allowed 
to comprehend the mysteries of Divine wisdom ; and that this 
capacity will not be quickened in the soul until after death. 

Nor will reflection, time, or solitude overcome these painful 

" Such as live in prison, or some desert place, and cannot 
have company, as many of our country gentlemen do in solitary 
houses, they must either be alone without companions, or live 
beyond their means, and entertain all comers as so many hosts, 
or else converse with their servants and hinds, such as are 
unequal, inferior to them, and of a contrary disposition; or 
else, as some do, avoid solitariness, spend their time with lewd 
fellows in taverns and ale-houses, and thence addict themselves 
to some unlawful disports, or dissolute courses." — Burton's 
Anatomy of Melancholy, p. 88. 

Another marvelous feature in our eccentric nature is that 
the emanations of genius seem to be original, and irrespective 
of parentage, blood, or moral destiny. 

" Columbus was the son of a weaver, and a weaver himself. 
Rabelais son of an apothecary. Claude Lorraine was bred a 
pastry-cook. Moliere son of a tapestry -maker. Cervantes served 
as a common soldier. Homer was a beggar. Hesiod was the 
son of a small farmer. Demosthenes of a cutler. Terence was 
a slave. Richardson was a printer. Oliver Cromwell the son 
of a brewer. Howard an apprentice to a grocer. Benjamin 
Franklin a journeyman printer. Dr. Thomas, Bishop of Wor- 
cester, son of a linen draper. Daniel Defoe was a hosier, and 
the son of a butcher. Whitfield son of an inn-keeper at Glou- 
cester. Sir Cloudesly Shovel, rear-admiral of England, was an 
apprentice to a shoemaker, and afterwards a cabin boy. Bishop 
Prideaux worked in the kitchen at Exeter College, Oxford. 
Cardinal Wolsey son of a butcher. Ferguson was a shepherd. 
Niebuhr was a peasant. Thomas Paine son of a stay-maker at 
Thetford. Dean Tucker was the son of a small farmer in Car- 
diganshire, and performed his journey to Oxford on foot. Ed- 
mund Halley was the son of a soap-boiler at Shoreditch. Joseph 
Hall, Bishop of Norwich, son of a farmer at Ashby do la Zouch. 


William Hogarth was put apprentice to an engraver of pewter 
pots. Dr. Mountain, Bishop of Durham, was the son of a beggar. 
Lucian was the son of a statuary. Virgil a potter. Horace of 
a shopkeeper. Plautus a baker. Shakspeare the son of a wool- 
stapler. Milton of a money-scrivener. Cowley son of a hatter. 
Mallet rose from poverty. Pope son of a merchant. Gay was 
apprentice to a silk mercer. Dr. Samuel Johnson was son of 
a bookseller at Litchfield. Akenside son of a butcher at New- 
castle. Collins son of a hatter. Samuel Butler son of a farmer. 
Ben Jonson worked some time as a bricklayer. Robert Burns 
was a ploughman in Ayrshire. Thomas Chatterton son of a 
sexton at RadclifF church, Bristol. Thomas Gray was the son 
of a money-scrivener. Matthew Prior son of a joiner in London. 
Henry Kirke White son of a butcher at Nottingham. Bloom- 
field and Gifford were shoemakers. Addison, Goldsmith, Otway, 
and Canning were sons of clergymen. Porson son of a parish 
clerk. The mechanic arts especially have reason to be proud 
of the contributions which their pursuits, leading to a directness 
and practical exercise of the intellectual faculties, have added 
to the glorious constellation of talent which has illuminated the 
world." — New York Star. 

And although genius is of celestial origin, and gives us all 
our best attributes, yet its fate is a mournful commentary upon 
the transient light which beams from human glory. 

"Homer was a beggar, Plautus turned a mill, Terence was a 
slave, Boethius died in jail; Paul Borghese had fourteen dif- 
ferent trades, and yet starved with them all; Tasso was often 
distressed for 5s. ; Bentevoglio was refused admittance into a 
hospital he had himself erected; Cervantes died of hunger; 
Camoens, the celebrated writer of The Lusiad, ended his days 
in an almshouse; and Vaugelas left his body to the surgeons to 
pay his debts as far as it would go. In our own country, Bacon 
lived a life of meanness and distress; Sir Walter Raleigh died 
on the scaffold; Spenser, the charming Spenser, died forsaken 
and in want; the death of Collins came through neglect, first 
causing mental derangement : — 

" 'Each lonely scene shall thee restore, 
For thee the tear be duly shed; 
Belov'd till life can charm no more, 
And mourn'd tho' Pitys self be dead.' 

" Milton sold his copyright of Paradise Lost for £15 ; at three 


payments, and finished his life in obscurity; Dryden lived in 
poverty and died in distress; Otway died prematurely and 
through hunger; Lee died in the streets; Steele lived a life of 
perfect warfare with bailiffs; Goldsmith's Vicar of Wakefield 
was sold for a trifle, to save him from the gripe of the law ; 
Fielding lies in the burying-ground of the English factory at 
Lisbon, without a stone to mark the spot; Savage died in prison 
at Bristol, where he was confined for a debt of £8; Butler lived 
in penury, and died poor; Chatterton, the child of genius and 
misfortune, destroyed himself!" 

All men bow to the acknowledged truth and beauty of wisdom, 
but follow the lurking impulses of passion. Even these plain 
and beautiful precepts, however loved and admired, are practi- 
cally unheeded and neglected. The laws of God, and the dic- 
tates of common prudence, are alike forgotten, and man listlessly 
floats down upon the stream of time, heedless, thoughtless, and 


"Never chase a lie, for, if you keep quiet, truth will eventually 
overtake and destroy it. 

"Never trust a person who solicits your confidence, for, in all 
probability, he will betray you. 

" If you want to make a fool of a man, first see if you can 
easily flatter him, and if you can succeed, your purpose is half 

"Secure the approbation of the aged, and you will enjoy the 
confidence, if not the love, of the young. 

" Our affections and our pleasures resemble those fabulous 
trees described by St. Oderie; the fruits which they bring forth 
are no sooner ripened into maturity than they are transformed 
into birds and fly away. 

"By examining the tongue of the patient, physicians find 
out the disease of the body, and philosophers the disease of the 

_ "There is nothing that a vicious man will not do to appear 
virtuous ! He loves nothing so well as his mask. I have known 
persons who in four weeks have not changed shirts; but who 
have nevertheless put on a clean collar daily, that they may 
appear clean. 

"A man of an open character naturally discovers his faults 
more than virtiies — the former are not easily forgiven, because 
the latter are not seen. 


" Cato the elder was wont to say that t the Romans were like 
sheep — a man were better to drive a flock of them, than one of 

"Those who arc easily flattered, arc always easily cheated." 

The quotations from Watts and others, thrown into this 
work, contain the pith and strength of refined and vigorous in- 
tellects upon the points noticed; and are invoked as well for 
this as for the purpose of showing that the object here is to 
point out the wayside signals of human imperfection. 

The depravities, eccentricities, and follies of man are not held 
up for scorn, but for pity; not for ridicule, but for profitable 
reflection; not in a spirit of criticism and fault-finding, but as 
it were to thrust the mirror of man's inmost soul before his re- 
luctant gaze, and force him to pause and ponder on his dark 
deformities; to expose the hidden elements of self-destruction 
that swell his vile and wicked heart; to warn him how his 
judgment and conscience are beguiled and misled by his beastly 
passions and brutal propensities ; how he vainly imagines that 
what he sees and thinks was never known before; how he en- 
courages vanity, self-will, jealousy, suspicion, hatred, revenge, 
and infidelity; how he would doom himself and others down in 
ignorance, lust, and superstition; how he wilfully and blindly 
refuses to admire and adore the glorious transports and the rap- 
turous inspirations poured in upon him from every star in the 
heavens, and every fragrant grove and sparkling rill in this 
golden Paradise of God. 

And thus the wayward contrarieties of man fill up his cup 
with ills and sorrow of his own creation ; night and rest are 
profaned by debauchery; diseased and heated appetite is glut- 
ted; health, honor, and self-respect defied; hard-earned means 
are squandered; debts unnecessarily and fraudulently incurred; 
brutal impulses wantonly indulged; and voluntary infamy and 
ruin are madly rushed on. 

Blind man, mysterious and ungovernable ! conscious of ill, 
and still led blindly on to do it; thy better self, the child of 
love and truth; thy wicked heart, on mischief firmly bent; no 
harmony of thought and action ; fierce and discordant attri- 
butes, baffling and frustrating analogy, reason, duty, and self- 
protection, and knowing nothing beyond invincible, blind, de- 
generate choice; looming and weaving for thy inevitable and 
fatal destiny for life and death, 

The warp and woof of human woe! 



Extract from Watts — Her creation — Its design — Man made alone — Then 
woman — Was created a wife — Marriage necessary for her — Secondary 
with man — He loves parade and fame — She, retirement — He strong — 
She weak — Yet he seeks home and marriage — Affinities — Mother — 
Wife — Children — Disregards opposition to her marriage — In power of 
man — Her patience — Suffering — Sorrows — Faults — These are the best — 
Those not so — Women of King Henry's age — EmeliaOsborn — Thackary 
— Their employments — Poor and rich — Poverty — Labor — Grades of capa- 
city — Self-government — Quakers' charity — Virtue — Benevolence — Wo- 
man's sphere — Lazy men — Extracts — Comparisons — Their separate des- 
tiny — Dana's lecture on woman, on Shakspeare — Lucretia Mott in reply 
to Dana's do. — Women holding offices, &c. — The power and sagacity of 
a wife in discovering and circumventing an intrigue to prevent her hus- 
band's re-election to an office — Marriage essential for this — Wife holds 
control of husband and children — Husbands lean on home — Fault of 
wife generally if he deserts it — Exceptions — Her power over his passions 
and love — Allan Ramsay's Gentle Shepherd. 

" The expanding rose just bursting into beauty has an irre- 
sistible bewitchingness; — the blooming bride led triumphantly 
to the hymeneal altar awakens admiration and interest, and the 
blush of her cheek fills with delight: — but the charm of ma- 
ternity is more sublime than these. Heaven has imprinted on 
the mother's face something beyond this world, something 
which claims kindred with the skies — the angelic smile, the 
tender look, the waking, watchful eye which keeps its fond vigil 
over her slumbering babe. 

" These are objects which neither the pencil nor the chisel 
can touch, which poetry fails to exalt, which the most eloquent 
tongue in vain would eulogize, and on which all description 
becomes ineffective. In the heart of men lies this lovely pic- 
ture; in his sympathies; it reigns in his affections; his eyes 
look round in vain for such another object on the earth. 

" Maternity, ecstatic sound ! so twined round our heart that 



it must cease to throb ere we forget it! 'Tis our first love; 'tis 
part of our religion. Nature has set the mother upon such a 
pinnacle, that our infant eyes and arms are first uplifted to it; 
we cling to it in manhood; we almost worship it in old age. 
He who can enter an apartment, and behold the tender babe 
feeding on its mother's beauty — nourished by the tide of life 
which flows through her generous veins — without a panting bo- 
som and grateful eye, is no man, but a monster. He who can 
approach the cradle of sleeping innocence without thinking that 
' of such is the kingdom of Heaven,' or view the fond parent 
hang over its beauties, and half retain her breath, lest she should 
break its slumbers, with a veneration not beyond all common 
feeling, is to be avoided in every intercourse in life, and is fit 
only for the shadow of darkness and the solitude of the desert; 
though a lone being, far be such feelings from me." — Watts! 
In the 27th verse, 1st chapter of Genesis, it is written : — 
"So God created man in his own image; in the image of 
God created he him; male and female created he them." 

And after this, in the 31st verse of the same chapter, it is 
recorded : — 

" And the evening and the morning were the sixth day." 
This is the general historical statement of the creation of man. 
In the second chapter, there is given a more detailed and chro- 
nological account of it. 

It proceeds as follows : The heavens and the earth were fin- 
ished with the sixth day, and God rested on the seventh day. 
It then proceeds to state, that the herbs had been made, but 
had not begun to grow; for there had been no rain, and "there 
was not a man to till the ground." 

A mist then went up, which watered the ground. " And 
the Lord formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed 
into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living 
soul. " And a garden was planted." 

And out of the ground every tree did grow. And the man 
was put into the garden, to dress and keep it; and he was told 
what fruit he might, and should not eat. 

After this, every beast and fowl was formed, and brought to 
him; and he named them all. Which must have taken several 
years; for Adam was but a mere man; he was not inspired; 
and he could not think of names, and call them over, any faster 
than we can. ; J 

But for Adam there was "not found an help meet for him." 

WOMAN. 135 

Now, after all this, "a deep sleep fell upon Adam ;" when 
the rib was taken out of his side, of which a woman was made, 
and " brought to," and delivered " to the man." 

So that man was not only made by himself, but he must 
have lived alone, or without any other human being, for many 
years before the woman was made. 

The general narrative of the creation of all things, given by 
the first chapter of the Bible, will not permit the inference to 
be drawn, that man and woman were both made together, or at 
the same time ; or that there was a female made before Eve, as 
it would seem by the words of the 27th verse, " Male and fe- 
male created he them ;" for this was the sixth day, and Adam 
was not made until after the seventh day; nor was "woman" 
made until after Adam had been made, nor until after a lapse 
of time sufficiently long for the execution by him of works of 
infinite magnitude, and which perhaps required years to per- 

The cavil that the Scriptures are inconsistent, in this respect, 
is thus explained. It is said, by some, that Moses wrote from 
tradition, three thousand years after the Creation. The more 
reasonable supposition is that the books of Moses are fragments 
of ancient and primitive history, made by different individuals 
of the successive generations from Adam ; which were specially 
preserved amongst the chosen people of Grod, and now by Moses 
collected, arranged, and published for the general information 
of the rest of mankind. 

So that man was made alone; that is, he was the only human 
being then made, and he was thus alone for years, tending and 
dressing an immense garden, from which went out a river so 
large as to water all the world; and sorting and naming all the 
beasts and fowls. During all this time, he lived entirely alone; 
and he has, therefore, ever since been better qualified to live 
alone, or without marriage, than women have been. 

Again : man was given universal dominion over all things 
in the world ; and all things have ever since been held and 
controlled by him; his pursuits, his employments, and his 
power, are designed for the open world; the woman was not 
made for any such objects, nor for any purposes but "a help 
meet for him," not a help-mate; and that her " conception 
should be multiplied," her " desire should be unto her hus- 
band •" and that he " shall rule over her." How literally true 
are these Almighty decrees ! 


Man, therefore, consistently, may live unmarried; his pur- 
suits require him sometimes to remain single ; but this is not 
so with woman. 

Most of the occupations of man have always been from home 
and out of doors ; those of woman at home and in doors ; man 
is naturally single and singular, and may remain so. In the 
beginning he was made by himself, and lived alone. 

The first woman was created a wife ; all women are born to 
be wives, and cannot remain single. They were not born alone, 
and they cannot remain alone. Marriage is a secondary, and 
not a necessary consideration with man ; but with woman it 
is primary, and absolutely essential. With all the perils of 
child-bearing, married women live twice as long as those who 
do not marry ; and even those who lead lives of open prostitu- 
tion have better health, and longer life than virtuous females 
not espoused. So intimate and urgent are the necessities of 
their nature identified with the occasions for their intercourse 
with man. 

Man delights in parade and show; woman is timid and help- 
less; and, when married, prefers and seeks retirement and 
peace. Man is restless, and roves about by himself; woman is 
contented, and never leaves her home alone. 

He is strong, and she is weak; he is ambitious for wealth 
and glory — she desires no fame but her husband's love, no riches 
but his happiness. 

He mixes with the world, and racks his genius for distinc- 
tions and rank in the arts, sciences, war, and politics; she de- 
votes her life to her household, and her immortal soul to her 

Notwithstanding these distinctions, it does not follow but 
that man most ardently prefers matrimony ; or that woman is 
inferior to man. He always looks anxiously to the hour of do- 
mestic repose; she has a destiny to fill as important as his, for 
which she is endowed with wonderful qualifications. "All 
things" were "very good in the sight" of the great Creator; 
but one other exercise of his omnipotent power was required 
to complete its transcendent perfections. To fulfil this object 
of his holy and exalted conceptions, he finally created woman, 
as the crowning glory of his Divine wisdom. 

Woman combines in her exalted attributes all that was re- 
quired to accomplish the moral perfections of creation. She 
was enriched with the proclivity for ardent passion, and per- 

WOMAN. 137 

petual affinity. Her winning charms fan up the eagerness of 
mutual love, and startle into joyful life the quick and proud 
conceptions of mysterious nature. 

She is unconscious of her own beauty, knows no guile, and 
suspects no wrong. If she is poor, she cheerfully works, and 
wastes nothing; if she has money and lands, with the artless 
simplicity of a child, she gives them all to her husband; thanks 
him to take them ; and is delighted, if they win his love. 

Woman is not fastidious ; she marries the wise and ignorant, 
rich and poor, old and young, good and bad, the ugly and the 

If her husband is more learned or rich, she makes it up by 
kindness and complacency ; if he is poorer, or more ignorant, 
she cheerfully brings herself down to his level; if older or 
younger, the spirit of accommodation is still triumphant. 

If he is bad, she keeps herself respectable, goes to church, 
makes him no worse, and very often persuades and reclaims 
him from sin. 

All restraint and opposition to her marriage are unheeded, 
however proudly born, or delicately educated. If a groom, a 
gardener, or a stranger, significantly looks at, or pauses for her, 
he is not suspected, repulsed, or reported; but thought of, 
watched, and waited for, countenanced, secretly met, and, if 
marriage is offered, run away with. 

She is always in earnest, and is much more dependent on 
man's respect for her than he has credit for. When he dares 
to play the part of seducer and bigamist, it would seem that he 
can do so with impunity. 

It would also seem that she was made for no other purpose 
than marriage, and that, unless she is suffered to fall into this 
abyss of her manifest destiny, she comes to nothing. 

True, she is not now perfect, for she fell with man; but she 
was once perfect, and now is more perfect than man. 

She was not forbidden by God to eat the apple ; and it does 
not appear that Adam told her she must not eat it. 

She was not reproached with this as of a wilful sin ; besides, 
she was beguiled ; her sin was not profane, and her condem- 
nation was not so heavy. 

There are bad women; but there is not one bad woman to 
every ten thousand bad men : every man has some bad propen- 
sity; something sly, selfish, or sinister. 

When she is kind and pure, she feels no lack of filial love 

138 WOMAN. 

by a reckless and forbidden union; nor is the purity of her 
character compromised by her devotion to an infamous hus- 

Impelled by the mysterious spell upon her weak and confid- 
ing nature, she steals from her cradle and her home for a clan- 
destine, precipitate, perhaps a fatal marriage. 

Unconscious of wrong, she flies back, and casts herself in 
anguish upon the bosom of her beloved mother, who never 
spurns her, but, woman-like, sobs in mournful sympathy ; she 
averts her timid eye from the angry brow of a proud and 
haughty father, at whose feet she kneels, to be discarded, and 
cast out with scorn. 

Still she is in solemn earnest; nothing but death can change 
her unextinguishable love for her husband ; and if he will suf- 
fer her presence, and give her one-half the chance which is 
grudgingly given to a common house-dog, she will follow him 
round the world, and cling to him, through infidelity, cruelty, 
disease, infamy, and death ; and sacrifice for him her life and 
soul, totally regardless of the odium and persecution of the 

Her destiny and her doom were " thy desire shall be to thy 
husband," and "he shall rule over thee." 

Even with "the suffering sorrow of her sex," her natural 
and inherent instinct is to seek for, to lean upon, and cleave 
unto man; she always believes him to have honest intentions; 
and naturally converts slight attentions into purposes of mar- 

It is the predominant thought of her existence; a pleasing, 
cheerful dream; a secret, thrilling impulse of confiding nature, 
fanned into hope, and then to love. 

The surrender she makes in marriage is so complete that it 
would be idolatry but with her ; it is not profane in her, for it 
is God's command. 

To her, marriage is a rapturous, lasting banquet ; it is the 
bright and dazzling star of love and homage to her husband. 

This is but a faint coloring of the picture of her never-dying 
love for man. 

Her pride, her destiny, begins with joy, and grows with 
glorious usefulness, or anguish, sorrow, and despair. 

The instances in which women do not have the moral excel- 
lence and charms peculiar to their sex are very uncommon ; so 
unusual that, when they are without them, even though they 

WOMAN. 139 

have in some respects delicate appointments; when they have 
the sly, cold, and severe mental indications of man — it attracts 
immediate notice; and if they are not brazen and bold in man- 
ner, they are destitute of the soft and innocent confidence 
which so eminently belongs to woman; they have an air of re- 
markable promptness and self-possession in their speech and 
deportment which cannot be concealed ; the distinction between 
them and a timid, gentle, true woman, is so obvious, that they 
seem to be another class of beings. Such women have all the 
craft and cunning of man, combined with the worst propensi- 
ties of their own sex. They get this from their fathers. Their 
number are few. Woe to the husband that gets such a wife ! 
It were better for him to have a millstone tied about his neck, 
and to be cast into the sea. 

There is no unkindness or discourtesy intended by this true 
and natural portrait of woman. 

No tongue can speak, no words can express, the illimitable 
sphere of thought, passion, and piety, which is exclusively filled 
up by her wonderful faculties. 

Her coming forth into the world is hailed with parental 
ecstasies of true delight. In infancy, she is a sweet cherub ; in 
childhood, she is bright and angelic ; at maturity, she buds and 
blooms in fragrant glory; and seems as if she was a shrine for 
all to kneel and worship at. 

When a wife, she gladly quits the world; and the million of 
its habitations, from the whitened cot to the gorgeous palace, 
point to the empire of her proud and glorious sway. 

As a mother, she fills her destiny with blameless love and 
holy piety; and, as a conscientious believer, she is the blessed 
mother, as she was the silent sentinel, at the tomb of her be- 
loved Saviour. 

She has the seraphic puritj' of the angels in heaven, with the 
celestial sympathy and thrilling passions of her sex, which 
were mysteriously and exclusively bestowed by God upon this 
final and triumphant work of his Almighty creation. 

The foregoing remarks flow from the spontaneous effusion of 
every man's heart, and he mourns to have them tested by re- 

The instinctive impulses of his soul are rebuked by the chill- 
ing certainty that, with all the fascinations of woman, she too 
is imperfect ; that she is ruled by the same iron sceptre of pas- 
sion and pride that holds dominion over him, and that very 

140 WOMAN. 

many of her sex are secretly influenced by and openly indulge 
in the worst depravities of our nature. The foregoing picture 
must therefore be carefully and honestly examined, lest its 
dazzling charms and fascinating and delusive shades should 
conceal its imperfections. 

Women appear to be almost insensible to the moral deformi- 
ties of men; and men, from their evil sympathies, do not very 
much notice each other's depravities, unless provoked. 

But the moral imperfections of women are more obvious, 
from their delicate nature ; at this point, we are struck with the 
terrible changes produced by man's expulsion from paradise. 

The sequel develops, with women, most wonderful evidences 
of this catastrophe. 

From her previous purity, and her subsequent apparent per- 
fections the mind is charmed with the novelties of her character, 
and reluctantly, and not until late in life, is able to cast off this 

However ungallant it may seem to write down these stub- 
born truths, it is but an act of justice that it should be faith- 
fully performed, to guard man and woman both, against the 
dangerous consequences of trusting too much to superficial ap- 
pearances, and the excitements of passion. 

All general results are made up of minute details, and without 
an accurate knowledge of the latter, however apparently insig- 
nificant may be the task of their deliberate examination, there 
is no other true process for the philosophical solution of any 

Bearing in mind these suggestions, it will be found that the 
objects detected behind the first bright shades of this dazzling 
picture are the shadows of her inherent follies. 

By the fall, her pure and holy nature was changed, and all 
its calm and heavenly elements were inverted. 

Making all just exceptions and allowances for females who 
are resolute in resisting bad propensities, being the class first 
described, a reference to the first practical traits of the character 
of those not included in the first named class discloses the mor- 
tifying truth that she has an ungovernable passion for per- 
sonal display, for gaudy, dashing dress, for every new fashion, 
and for frivolous company. 

For curls, laces, dashing shawls, hats and dresses, feathers 
and flounces; brilliants, dangling chains, watches, and jewelry; 

WOMAN. 141 

simpering smiles, sly glances, painted cheeks, lips, and dimples; 
penciled brows and eyelashes, bergamot and musk, with affect- 
ed and conspicuous affectations of bashfulness, innocence, and 

She will not believe that plain dress, industry, discretion, 
unpretending simplicity of deportment and conversation, and 
an unblemished reputation — these good old-fashioned female 
virtues, so largely held and modestly practiced by the truly 
pure of her sex only — will command the esteem of all decent 
persons, and extort the respect even of the bad. 

And that the only persons attracted by perspicuous dress and 
behavior are fops and libertines, who track out, and assign to 
such women, married or single, an equivocal position, from which 
they never escape. 

Such women, when married, if they can make a pretext for 
keeping servants, wholly neglect their house-work and cooking, 
and denounce them as filthy and vulgar. In this way, their 
husbands never have wholesome food, or decent accommoda- 
tions, and their expenses are doubled in waste, and feeding ser- 
vants and visitors. 

Single women of this character maintain an impregnable 
aversion to house-work, and openly abhor and utterly despise it. 

However ignorant, low-born, and unfit for anything but 
drudgery, they obstinately shun work, although thereby they 
can always obtain good wages, comfortable homes, and be in the 
way of obtaining reputable marriages. 

The result is that they lead vagrant lives, are always poor, 
spend everything they can get in fine clothes, never acquire a 
good reputation; no one can depend on them, nor can they de- 
pend on themselves. 

They lounge about home as long as they can, put themselves 
on others, and, when finally compelled to go to work, instead 
of going into the employment of reputable families, turn circus, 
riders, supernumeraries, dancers, singers, and actors at theatres, 
and do anything but work, and become loose and abandoned. 

Thousands of families, public houses, hotels, steamboats and 
steamships and packets, are obliged to employ men to do all 
the cooking, chamber-work, and waiting, at which women can 
do more, and do it better, and make better wages than men, 
aDd more than they, the women, can make at men's work. 

The most absurd and disgusting incongruities are produced 
by thus inverting all the occupations of life. 

142 WOMAN. 

The farmer's wife and daughters may, at the in-gathering*, 
help him, and he may help them, upon any emergency, with 
propriety ; but, to see a woman ploughing, or at work in a coal- 
mine, or a man washing dishes or scrubbing floors, is fulsome. 

To reciprocate labor is proper, but to make permanent ex- 
change of it is unnatural ; neither can prosper. 

Women are most aptly fit for all sorts of house-work, and 
teaching all the primary branches of learning ; for accoucher- 
ing, nursing, manufacturing all kinds of wearing apparel, ex- 
cept mens' hats, boots, and shoes; keeping account-books, 
dockets, records, and every kind of shops, and buying and sell- 
ing all sorts of light wares and merchandises, and executing de- 
signs for and the manufactory of silks, ribands, laces, light 
goods, and for everything appurtenant to works of ornament, in 
which they can exercise superior taste and skill. 

In all this wide range of honorable and useful labor, they 
far excel the men. For all these pursuits they should be most 
adequately educated and generously rewarded, and no man 
should be allowed to compete with them. 

There are thousands of men and women whose mental capa- 
cities are not up to the level of conventional responsibility, and 
are, therefore, not adequate to the performance of any employ- 
ments above subservient and subordinate duty, who have no 
judgment, and are but barely able to do as they are bid. 

There is no end to the abortive efforts of men and women 
both, even to keep house, or to carry on the most trifling pur- 
suit, upon the strength of their own judgment. 

When they discover that they labor under this inefficiency, 
they should abandon the experiment, and resign themselves to 
the safe and quiet irresponsibilities of servitude, where they are 
free from care, and their wants are supplied by their earnings, 
without being exposed to the risks of experiment and enter- 

It is absurd to answer these positions by saying that we are 
all equal, and that a poor person has a right to live in his own 
house, and to live as well as a rich person. This is not true : 
every one has an undoubted right to live as he may choose off 
of the result of his own earning, or off of means acquired by in- 
heritance or devise ; but he has no right to run in debt, or to 
live by trick and fraud ; and, if he is poor, he is bound to live 
according to his means. 

If he has to work for his living, he should do it patiently, 

WOMAN. 143 

and not find fault with those who can live without it. He has 
no right to covet his neighbor's good fortune. 

Poverty is the destiny of some — this lies between them and 
their Maker. 

If we are not favored with sagacity sufficient to take part in 
the sharp competitions of the world, we should be content with 
a comfortable subsistence, which, by industry, we can always 
make off of the occasions of others, if we have health and arc 
temperate, and lay by something for infirmity and age. 

The art of acquiring property consists more in self-denial 
and saving than in making money. 

Persons in the subsidiary spheres of life are always free from 
the casualties of a busy and adventurous world, whereas the 
best qualified are ever failing in the pursuits of wealth and 

The imperious laws of self-government apply most obviously, 
with more force, to poor single females when thrown upon 
their own resources, than to men. 

It may be said, with certainty, that while women remain ex- 
clusively in their own spheres, they hold their fortunes in their 
own hands. 

This view of the subject is most strikingly illustrated by a 
reference to the beautiful and dignified system of the Quakers, 
whose women are educated with proud emulations for house- 
hold duty. 

Look upon their clean chambers, plain and perfect wardrobes, 
the order, elegance, and quiet simplicity of all their domestic 
movements; no noise, confusion, waste, or irregularity; every- 
thing to admire, and nothing to criticise. 

It has passed into a proverb, that no man can go amiss in 
taking a wife from these excellent people ; that no Quaker 
woman ever failed to make a good wife; that all their women 
get married, make their husbands respectable, and that none 
of them are indigent. 

Their poor women are most cheerfully put upon a footing 
with the family they serve, because, in education and moral 
worth, they are all alike, eat at the same table, and live to- 
gether on terms of equality and free intercourse, and mingle 
with the relations and friends of the family, and thus obtain an 
elevated reputation for true and real worth, under the auspices 
of which, the only safe and prudent preliminaries for an honor- 
able rnarriatrc can be obtained. 

144 WOMAN. 

Thousands of poor females are sheltered, and their children 
fostered behind the delicate curtain of true benevolence every- 
where, by respectable families. 

This spirit of quiet and unaffected charity is inherent with all 
virtuous persons. 

It is the philanthropic impulse of every generous man, even 
to his decayed slave and beast of burden. 

The woman that will bridle her licentious pride, resolutely 
abstain from lust and folly, and patiently keep herself in the 
paths of virtue, will never want a home. 

Upon her death-bed she will frankly and devoutly acknow- 
ledge that she has had the pure sympathies of all virtuous per- 
sons, and that her way has been smoothed with sweeter joys 
than her brightest hopes had looked for. 

Honest poor women are not doomed to helpless poverty; they 
need not struggle for food, or work and slave themselves for 
a pittance; these charges are false and fraudulent libels, and 
altogether destitute of the least shadow of truth. 

They are, by the gallantry and courtesy of man, encouraged 
in all their truant and visionary experiments, in the broad fields 
of his various employments, in which he may, and she cannot 
prosper; and millions of them, under the most shallow pretexts, 
as cousins, friends, and companions, by means of his forbearance, 
loaf on his hard earnings for life. 

No decent woman is ever starved in, or turned from, the 
nursery or the kitchen, while she behaves herself there. 

The house and the hearth-stone is man's sanctuary, for which 
he hopes, and to which he clings; here rest the pillars of 
woman's throne. 

It is here she may delicately refine and lawfully employ her 
fascinations to win and keep his love. 

Not on the stage nor in the workshop, but at home, about 
her appropriate and honest labor, and in the sphere for which 
she was ordained. 

Here she can achieve and wield the magic sceptre of nuptial 
power, and translate all man's follies and empty affectations of 
superiority into thrilling ecstasies of voluntary bondage. 

From these dedicated paths of prosperous preferment she 
should never wander, and when the sad hour of her departure 
from these realms of female happiness comes, fear and sorrow 
strike upon the secret emotions of her conscience. 

The same disreputable and disastrous propensities are found 

WOMAN. 145 

with thousands of ignorant, presumptuous, impatient, and rest- 
less young men; too lazy to work, despising everything they 
have, aud grasping for everything they have not got; and vain 
enough to fancy that they can become illustrious by magic, and 
that the occupations of patient and honest labor are insignificant, 
and beneath their notice. 

"The Women of Henry s Age. — Of the women in King Ed- 
ward's reign, we may judge and wondei - , comparing them with 
that sex in this present age, by observing what Nicolas Udal 
writ in his Epistle to Queen Katharine, before the English Pa- 
raphrase upon the Gospel of St. John. 'But now in this gra- 
cious and blissful time of knowledge, in which it hath pleased 
God Almighty to reveal and show abroad the light of his most 
holy Gospel, what a number is there of noble women, especially 
here in this realm of England; yea, and how many in the years 
of tender virginity; not only as well seen, and as familiarly 
traded in the Latin and Greek tongues, as in their own mother 
language; but also both in all kinds of profane literature, and 
liberal arts, exacted, studied, and exercised; and in the Holy 
Scripture and Theology so ripe, that they are able aptly, cun- 
ningly, and with much grace, either to indite or to translate into 
the vulgar tongue, for the public instruction and edifying of the 
unlearned multitude ? Neither is it now a strange thing to hear 
gentlewomen, instead of vain communication about the moon 
shining in the water, to use grave and substantial talk in Latin 
or Greek with their husbands, of godly matters. It is now no 
news in England, for young damsels in noble houses, and in the 
courts of princes, instead of cards and other instruments of idle 
trifling, to have continually in their hands either psalms, homi- 
lies, and other devout meditations, or else Paul's Epistles, or 
some book of Holy Scripture matters; and as familiarly to read 
or reason thereof in Greek, Latin, French, or Italian as in 
English. It is now a common thing to see young virgins so 
nursed and trained in the study of letters, that they willingly 
set all other pastimes at naught for learning's sake. It is now 
no news at all to see queens and ladies of most high state and 
progeny, instead of courtly dalliance, to embrace virtuous exer- 
cises of reading and writing, and with most earnest study both 
early and late, to apply themselves to the acquiring of know- 
ledge as well in all other liberal arts and disciplines, as also 
most especially of God and his most holy Word.' " — Strype's 
Life of Parker, p. 180. 

146 WOMAN. 

The warmth and constancy of woman's love is sometimes as 
enthusiastic as it is profane, and as selfish as it is fickle. _ A 
singular iustance of this is put by the author of " Vanity Fair," 
which he says is true : — 

"Amelia, who had just been married to Captain George 
Osborne, of the British army, saw her husband slip a note in 
a bouquet to Rebecca Rawdon, at the Duke of Richmond's ball 
at Brussels, which was held on the evening before the battle of 
Waterloo. This circumstance, together with his neglect of her, 
and his marked attentions to Mrs. R. during the whole evening, 
overwhelmed Mrs. 0. with jealousy and despair. The next day 
Captain Osborne was shot in battle ; she forgot the intrigue, 
gave birth to a son, upon whom she doted with frantic fond- 
ness, and dedicated eighteen years in fervent adoration of her 
husband's picture, and devotion to his memory, and obsti- 
nately persevered in rejecting the generous and noble hand of 
Major Dobbin. 

"At length she was rebuked for the folly by Beckcy Rawdon, 
whom she loaded with reproaches, and charged her with false- 
hood and cruelty. Beckey dispelled the delirium of her mad 
infatuation by flinging into her face the ball-room invitation to 
her to abandon her husband Col. Rawdon and elope with Cap- 
tain Osborne. 

"Upon this disclosure, Amelia wiped her eyes, stamped upon 
the letter, sent for Captain Dobbin, waited in a drenching rain 
for his arrival in the steamer, leaped into his arms, loaded him 
with kisses, crawled under his cloak, clung like a maniac to his 
arm, devoured his hand with caresses, and married him right 
off; forgot her sainted George, and with a brighter flame more 
ardently worshiped at another shrine." 

For the purpose of the illustration, it is immaterial whether 
this tale be real or fictitious; for it is a common incident in the 
every day development of the mysterious character and singular 
temperament of man and woman both; and another irresistible 
proof of their surprising, selfish, impulsive, and mental similarity. 

The same author takes occasion to give some glowing pictures 
of the self-denial and incredible endurance of woman. 

The following are some of his sympathetic indulgences. 
They are fraught with exquisite feeling and truth. 

" What do men know about Avoman's martyrdoms ? We 
should go mad had we to endure the hundredth part of those 
daily pains which are meekly borne by many women. Cease- 

WOMAN. 147 

less slavery, meeting with no reward ; constant kindness and 
gentleness, met by cruelty as constant; love, labor, patience, 
watchfulness, without so much as the acknowledgment of a 
good word ; all this how many of them have to bear in quiet, 
and appear abroad with cheerful faces, as if they felt nothing. 

"Tender slaves they are; they must be hypocrites and weak. 

"How many thousands of women are there who perform 
cheerless duties by day, and sleep in gloomy cells at night; 
who watch by thankless sick beds, and suffer the harassment 
and tyranny of querulous and disappointed old age ; who are 
doomed to endure the slavery of hospital nurses without 
wages ; sisters of charity, if you like, without the romance and 
the sentiment of sacrifice, who strive, fast, watch, and suffer ua- 
pitied, and fade away ignobly and unknown/' — Thackaray. 

Notwithstanding these touching remarks upon the sorrows 
of woman, it must be remembered that the inscrutable wisdom 
of the same Providence who ordained her fate also pronounced 
for man his awful doom. 

Whether his destiny is not more severe than hers, and 
whether its stings and agonies are not more poignant, is a specu- 
lation left for his cooler deliberation. On this subject, she has 
not reciprocated to his muse. From the constitution of her 
nature, she has not, perhaps, the same compassionate and ten- 
der sympathy for him that he has for her. 

Her yearnings towards him are dependence and for cherish- 
ment; his for her are pity and protection. She expects his 
succor, and he is ordained to yield it to her. He, therefore, 
appreciates her afflictions more than she can understand his. 

She is eminently helpless and impulsive ; he is more endowed 
with judgment and firmness ; her sensations are like a child, 
who will desert the hand that feeds it ; his are those of a father, 
who but seldom forgets his offspring. In the heyday of youth, 
without provocation, she will abandon the husband of her first 
love, and cast her babes from her bosom for sensual indulg- 
ence; he but rarely does this without some fierce and impel- 
ling urgency. 

But this is maintaining that the fate of man involves tribu- 
lations like those of woman, instead of showing that, from the 
acute and peculiar character of woman's nature, she is not so 
apt to hold, except by impulse, the concern for man that he 
does for her, and that, therefore, his lot in life is not a subject 
of the same consideration with her as hers is with him. 

148 WOMAN. 

Hence the beautiful and pathetic apostrophes before recited, 

and the songs and rapturous sympathies of man in all times for 

Whereas the writings of woman contain no such exuberant 
exclamations towards man. She has not expressed her opinion 
upon this subject. 

This is a subject of much interest, and it seems occasion has 
been taken by an author of acknowledged authority to consult 
the safe and careful judgment of aged, experienced, and intel- 
ligent women, in all spheres of society, from the wife of the 
humble laborer up to the noble consort — the ignorant and the 
wise, the ancient and pure matron, widow, and virgin — the mere 
moralist and the devout believer — and he finds, from these safe 
and solemn sources of information, that the mental and moral 
elements of the sexes, as to the reciprocation of their sympa- 
thies, are most widely apart ; that the destiny of man is, in the 
sober judgment of candid and intelligent woman, more beset 
with cares, anxieties, and exposures than hers ; and for these 
reasons she would wish all her children to be daughters ; that 
she would sooner trust to the faith and discretion of a man 
than to those qualities of woman ; she will point out the eccen- 
tricities of her infant daughter, whose faults she can, but the 
father cannot detect, from his sexual tenderness. These she 
will contrast with the ready submission of her son. She marks 
this spirit of self-will and rebellion consummated and confirmed 
in the pubescence of the daughter; after when, her secret feel- 
ings are contempt of advice, and hatred for restraint ; that, 
when married, she will degrade and drudge her mother, or 
leave her to helpless want and public charity: while her son 
will slave his life, forego the allurements, or repudiate the 
charms of matrimony for his beloved mother; that he will be 
a father to her, and faithfully cherish his bereaved father ; and 
how seldom the daughter voluntarily, cheerfully, and proudly 
performs these holy offices of unaffected piety for her parents ! 

She will point for comparison to every human shed and 
shelter as the home-place of woman, reared, supplied, and de- 
fended by the labor and valor of man. 

She will tell you that while woman is nestled and cherished 
in the closets of plenty and the cloisters of security, millions 
of men are upon the boisterous ocean, amidst its howling hor- 
rors; or, abroad, surrounded by deadly contagions, famine, 
pestilence, and war. 

WOMAN. 149 

That millions of men shadow not their door-ways but to feed 
and slumber, or, at long intervals, to bring home the fruits of 
their toil for woman ; and that all the imminent and unceasing 
responsibilities of human existence are thrown upon the hands 
and rest in the hearts of man. 

She will nominate the earth-bed watching, mean subsistence, 
oppressive labor, persecutions, crosses, wrongs, and out-door 
exigencies of man, to which her favored sex is an utter stranger. 

And she will certify that, if her character has been clean, 
and she has been discreet in her deportment, in all her emer- 
gencies through life, man has acknowledged her superiority, re- 
spected her as a sister, revered her as a mother, loved her as a 
daughter, and defended and cherished her as his wife. 

The same author also says that brutal lust, heartless avarice, 
and remorseless depravity, abated from this summary of man's 
relative contraventionalism with woman, and the veracity of 
this inventory will be ratified by every intelligent and honest 
mother who has reached the age of fifty years. 

These views present, perhaps, a fair representation of the re- 
lative characteristics of the sexes, and they go very far to show 
the great similarity of their physical propensities and animal 
wants : how essentially defective, and respectively subservient 
and necessary they are to each other's existence ; how involun- 
tarily blind they are to each other's imperfections in everything 
which concerns these sexual deficiencies ; how urgent and im- 
pregnable their reciprocal affinities, passions, and mental sensa- 
tions ; and how eminently important it is for both to be governed 
by the sober dictates of wisdom, and to avoid the stimulating ex- 
citements of desire, in the preliminaries for a congress of their 
mutual destinies inevitably for life, perhaps for never-ending 

Another author makes the following remarks, from the ap- 
plication of which thousands must be excused; however, they 
do apply, no doubt, with melancholy truth to many more of the 
sex than the candor of woman or the gallantry of men would 
be disposed to acknowledge. 

He says that all women have an inherent propensity to 
criticise their husbands, parents, brothers, and children; that 
upon emergencies, such as accidents, injuries, persecutions, and 
alarmino- illness, their sympathies are sometimes wakened up 
from self-interest or fear; but in the ordinary current of do- 
mestic affairs, and at church, on visits, drives, &c, they imper- 


150 WOMAN. 

tincntly and impatiently chide, find fault, contradict, and rebuke; 
that they reserve their urbanity and their smiles for strangers, 
so much so, that instances occur of surprising contrasts between 
their rigid and dissatisfied tempers at home, and their bland 
and captivating complacency abroad; that women hold each 
other in distrust, suspicion, and jealousy, have no mercy or 
compassion for each other's peculiarities, errors, or foibles, and 
unsparingly denounce, condemn, abuse, and persecute each 
other, right or wrong, if provoked to anger or resentment. 

That every frank, intelligent, and experienced woman will 
acknowledge that she would sooner trust to the first decent- 
looking man she meets in the streets, if in adversity or want, 
than to the benevolence or sincerity of any one of her own sex. 

That they neglect their household duties, and to have pre- 
pared seasonable, well-dressed, and punctual meals, clean lodg- 
ing-rooms, and clothing; lie in bed or read the newspapers before 
breakfast, promenade and make calls before dinner, pay or re- 
ceive visits in the afternoon, and leave the breakfast, dinner, and 
supper to be got up by ignorant, lazy, wasteful, and filthy ser- 
vants, too much cooked, or not half done, and carelessly and 
unseasonably dished. 

That they do not provide for their household at suitable times 
and with care and economy, but send their servants for every 
cent's worth of groceries and marketing at the moment it is 
wanted, and thus everything got is stale or of inferior quality, 
and paid for at the highest prices. 

That, although they are wholly dependent for homes, shelter, 
protection, and subsistence upon their husbands or fathers, upon 
whose indulgence and purse they unhesitatingly obtrude every 
whim and caprice, they take no pleasure or pride in minister- 
ing kindly, in seasons of fatigue and anxiety, to their compo- 
sure, comfort, and personal convenience, in watching and 
cheerfully anticipating their wants, in keeping clean, neat, 
and ready for use their clothing, chambers, lodgings, and food; 
but that, on the contrary, they fret, scold, and snivel; in im- 
patient and impertinent murmurs find fault, evade and refuse 
to perform the most proper and appropriate offices of conjugal 
love and filial duty. 

It has also been said that they oftentimes entertain no true 
respect for their domestic protectors and their homes, no genu- 
ine spirit of frugality, for economical living and dress; that they 
will spend every cent they have, and all they can obtain from 

WOMAN. 151 

others, regardless how it comes, or, if it can be spared, for per- 
nicious indulgences, for cordials, ices, punch, trifling toys, 
jewelry, and useless decorations of their persons. 

That they are naturally idle, love gossip, ogling, bustle, noise, 
vulgar amusements, indelicate conversations, secret meetings, 
and intrigues with strangers. 

That they go mad for every new thing they see, and, however 
costly or beautiful the garment is, it is endurable no longer 
than the caprice lasts which impetuously demanded it. 

That, in the hour of bankruptcy or ruin, they will affect to 
mourn and weep over their fallen husbands or fathers, whose 
misfortunes they have perhaps accelerated; while there is 
squandered in the kitchen, where they should be diligently at 
work, five times as much in servant's waste and wages as would 
subsist the whole family. 

That, under pretexts of charity and visiting, and in defiance of 
their fathers and husbands, they will billet upon their tables and 
families, swarms of worthless and lazy acquaintances and men- 
chasers, who are notorious for going from place to place, to hang 
about under the contemptible pretext of making themselves use- 
ful as companions ; while they are really watching for chances to 
inveigle themselves into advantageous matches : and it is said 
that such women sometimes reward the credulity of a stupid 
wife by seducing her husband or son. In such cases, the wife 
is justly punished for neglecting to devote herself with undi- 
vided affection and fidelity to her family, and for not keeping 
away the serpent of temptation from her hearthstone. 

The story is also recorded of an old man who had outlived 
dragooning and submission, and then peached upon the profli- 
gacy of his family, by the production of an undisputed account 
current of their petty frauds upon his peace and his purse, by 
which it indubitably appeared, that, all fractions, day visits, 
parties, and pic-nics off, he had supplied a solid aggregate of 
extra feed and board for seven sturdy genteel paupers, for 
twenty-one years, equal to one person living for one hundred 
and forty years, and more than enough to bring up and educate 
seven children to the age of twenty-one years. 

It is also said that, if the husband revolts at these fashion- 
able abuses, however he discovers their degrading and demoral- 
izing influences upon his family, or expels these loafing vultures 
from his house, or forbids his family their participation, he is 
insulted., abused, and denounced as stingy and mean. 

152 WOMAN. 

These are humiliating truths, and they impulsively raise the 
just reflection that man's peace, repose, and happiness require 
no rounds of company and visitors, and that these blessing 
most found in retirement, and in avoiding all intimacies except 
with his own blood and family. 

That our time and thoughts should be dedicated to the work 
of accommodating our habits, tempers, dispositions, and conduct 
to the proper wishes and happiness of our select friends, and in 
persuading and encouraging them to cherish with us a cheerful 
reciprocation of all the affections and purities of the heart. 

By this rational and consistent course of life, we may sur- 
round ourselves by true and real friends, fastened to us by ties 
of love and confidence, and thus establish a sure and permanent 
compact of social faith and safety. 

We may mingle with the world, and gaze upon its follies and 
pageantries for business, instruction, and curiosity; but we should 
carefully and resolutely shun its intimacies, and avoid its par- 

We are social creatures, and essential to each other's happi- 
ness, but the indiscreet indulgence of this impulse is pernicious 
to moral purity, and destructive to personal safety. 

God made man for solemn and intense, and not for profane 
or empty sympathies; for love and labor, and not for selfish- 
ness and sloth ; for faith and hope, and not for treachery and 
chance; for honor and temperance in all things, and not for 
falsehood and extravagance ; for wise and select friendships, and 
not for careless and promiscuous consort with an obscene and 
degenerated world. 

Perhaps few minds are prepared to emit the refined and 
beautiful sentiments contained in the lectures, a very faithful 
abstract of which is hereafter given from the "Evening Bul- 
letin" of Philadelphia, December, 1849. 

The author of these rich and glowing emanations, by reason, 
it is supposed, of his not being more familiar with the practical 
affairs of life, is somewhat visionary in his abstractions on 
literature; notwithstanding this, he is eminently qualified for 
the most delicate and chaste conceptions of the character of 

By reason of his seclusion from the world, it will be re- 
marked that his ideas upon this interesting subject are princi- 
pally addressed to her affections, moral excellencies, and intel- 

WOMAN. 153 

lcctual affinities, rather than to her personal qualities and rela- 
tive or domestic attributes. 

But it is to be regretted that his better reflections had not 
been also bestowed upon the character and powers of Shak- 
speare, whose women he uses for illustrating his views of the 
female character ; that it did not occur to him to think fur- 
ther upon the causes and sources of that great man's triumphs 
of thought and expression; his surprising and extraordinary 
faculties of conceiving and portraying fiction without fault, and 
exposing nature without fiction; his boundless capacities for 
solemn meditation, vivid wit, biting sarcasm, bitter hatred, fierce 
revenge, brilliant fancy, and burning love. 

Whether all these conspicuous elements of Shakspeare's trans- 
cendent intellect were inspired, as he contends, by the man- 
ners and literature of his time, the character of which, accord- 
ing to the present standard of intelligence and propriety, must 
have been vulgar, degraded, and superstitious, if it is to be 
judged of by the liberal use he makes of obscene language and 
extravagant and unnatural representations ; or whether these 
mental inspirations of the great poet, as is here suggested, are 
not more satisfactorily to be accounted for in the vigor of his 
judgment, his vast knowledge, disciplined experience, refined 
excitement, glowing fancy, ardent enthusiasm, intense study, 
resolute and untiring labor through life, together with a keen 
and constant watch upon the practical character and graphic ef- 
fects excited by the mental and physical living enactments of his 
lofty impersonations, by which he was enabled to magnify his 
generating powers, and cull, and catch, and treasure up, now a 
bright and then a brighter spark, until the brilliant and daz- 
zling splendor of his anxious and exalted creation was per- 

The notes of Mr. Dana's lectures upon 

are as follows : — 

Mr. Dana's Third Lecture. 

Tuesdat Evening, Dec. 4th. 
Mr. Dana announced, as the subject of his third lecture, 
woman the characteristics of the sex, and the essential differ- 
ences between the nature of man and woman. These differ- 
ences he considered as grounded in nature, not arbitrary nor 

154 WOMAN. 

the result of accident. He would not attempl , by reasoning, to 
prove the distinction, but would set out with it as an admitted 
truth, to be viewed rather as the result of a sentiment, and 
lying deeper than the understanding. 

He disavowed all sympathy with the tendencies of the times 
to change the position of woman, and place her in a similar po- 
sition to man. In the preservation of all that is feminine in 
her, lies the deep respect we feel for her. The extreme of this 
doctrine, of changing the condition of woman, is that which 
claims for her political rights. It rose in England and France 
about the time of the old French Involution, then died away, 
but is alive again. There is again much talk about the rights 
of woman. There are plenty in the world to set the kettle boil- 
ing, and not only one, but the whole range is teeming and bub- 
bling, from the great political kettle down to the little ones. 
In this outcry about rights and equality, woman will have good 
luck, if she do not come out of the play like Nick Bottom, in 
Midsummer Night's Dream, with an ass's head on. 

No man, strictly speaking, can be solitary, and continue truly 
a man. He is as essentially social as he is individual. If his 
condition is a lower one, it is so in order that another may be 
developed in a higher state. There must be concession as well 
as appropriation. The social state must become a representa- 
tion of the entire man. This condition of society, and the true 
happiness arising from it, were illustrated by a quotation from 
an old divine, who, speaking of saints and angels, says that 
though they differ, yet all are perfectly happy — just as the 
strings of an instrument are; some are high and others low, yet 
they produce a perfect harmony. So, from the different de- 
grees of glory in heaven there springs a harmonious order of 
Divine wisdom, which glorifies every one. 

The distinctions of sex designate certain indestructible rela- 
tions, such as that of father, mother, &c. These imply an order 
of beings pre-ordained to such relations, possessing mentul as 
well as physical differences. This order is perfect in its kind, 
and when a division of it takes occupations not concordant with 
its nature, we perceive a jar, and the distinctive attributes are 
more or less effaced. Each sex is peculiar, and has its limited 
attributes. Woman has hers, and whenever ambition leads her 
to attempt to act the man, she, so far, ceases to be a woman. 

We look on nothing finite when it is single, which does not 
cause a sense of loneliness. A solitary field flower creates a 

WOMAN. 155 

feeling of sadness which we do not experience when we see two 
in company. This companionship of all things in nature was 
illustrated by a quotation from Jones Very, commencing — 

" Thou hast not let the rough-barked tree to grow, 
Without a mate, upon this bank," &c. 

We see everywhere opposite qualities, a union of which is 
necessary for perfection. This arises from the principle of sex. 
Every attribute requires, in the opposite sex, an opposite quali- 
ty to make a perfect whole. This shows no inferiority in 
either. It is a principle pervading all organic nature. No 
creation comes from God in a single line, but with a corre- 
sponding line, there being in one an excess to meet the defi- 
ciencies of the other. The two united become what neither 
could have been alone. Man and wife then become one, and 
their union realizes one perfect being. The following passage 
from Shakspeare was quoted as containing the sum and essence 
of the lecturer's thoughts upon this point : — 

" He is the half-part of a blessed man, 
Left to be finished by such a she ; 
And she a fair, divided excellence, 
Whose fullness of perfection lies in him. 
O, two such silver currents, when they join, 
Do glorify the banks that bound them in." 

Every attempt to make a sex independent destroys the quali- 
ties of the sex. The right way to realize the true relation of 
sex to sex is to cherish, as sacred, the sentiments, the affections, 
the moral and the intellectual attributes, as they are character- 
istic of each. The intellectual powers, the moral attributes, 
and the affections have their sexual differences. Under the one 
name of man, we have two sexes, spiritual as well as physical. 
The distinction was illustrated by the difference of the passion 
of love in man and woman. The man or woman who thinks 
the distinction fanciful has never loved at all. Let woman 
beware how she strives to love like a man. 

She is half to blame who has been tried, 
He comes too near who comes to be denied. 

Labt Montague. 

With all her feminineness, she cannot love at all. Let her cul- 
tivate her nature in the spirit of a woman, and in nothing else. 
Herein alone lies her true being, happiness, and power. The 
difference between courage in the two sexes was also illustrated ; 

156 WOMAN. 

the quality so active in man having in woman a mild counte- 
nance, and overcoming, because it strives not. 

Much scorn has been expressed at the doctrine of man's su- 
premacy. No true woman, however, will refuse to acknowledge 
it. There is a sense of reverence in all of us. It is called into 
action by beauty, by the innocent face of a child. It makes 
the strong man gentle before a child; and yielding as a woman 
in the presence of woman. It gives to woman the power of 
man in the presence of man. That woman is wanting in some- 
thing essential who has not this feeling of reverence. 

If there is a lack of it towards man, there is danger that it 
may be feeble towards God. Many women may have married, 
but none have loved, without this reverence. 

The humanizing effects of home were beautifully dwelt upon. 
To man, it belongs to labor; to woman, to fit the laborer for his 
work. Without woman, man would be but half a man, and the 
world would experience a jar. The hot haste of modern inno- 
vation bids fair to destroy the sentiment of life and the beauty 
of home. 

Must this process, which is just changing the mental world, 
go on for a dispute about social rights ? If woman leave the 
fireside, and turn political reformers, what a fearful state we 
should be in ! Man would be branded by her at the ballot-box — 
out-talked by her in the market-place. Such a change would 
be monstrous. Love would become brutalized — woman would 
become gross as man ; and there would be no longer man and 
woman, but a new race of moral and mental hybrids. 

The lecturer spoke of many modern customs (more prevalent 
in New England, probably, than here) ; such as making a dis- 
play of children's talents through the newspapers ; with such 
announcements as that Miss Brown received the first prize for 
English grammar, &c. We have Portias innumerable, Daniels 
come to judgment. We hear of Mrs. President so and so, and 
committees and secretaries of the same sex. Even in a court- 
room, during the trial of a case of mercantile interest, business- 
men found no places, because the court was full of ladies. 
There is too much of publicity for the well-being of woman. 
Let the principle thus commenced be acted out, and there would 
soon be corresponding physical changes. The voice and fea- 
tures would take the expression of the changed spirit within. 

The lecturer disclaimed that he held woman altogether in- 
ferior to man. The intellect is not the highest attribute — the 

WOMAN. 157 

moral qualities are higher. But the tendency is to force the 
intellect, and leave the heart fallow. This prevailing pride of 
intellect is bad enough in man; how much worse in woman! 
No one mind can know all things. The truest knowledge is 
to know what to know. 

"A little wisdom is better than much knowledge." 

Let woman seek and do that for which she is physically and 
spiritually pre-configured. To the general rule of man's su- 
premacy there are exceptions. Genius is one, but it is inde- 
pendent, and only makes the individual in whom it resides its 
organ. Woman need not be lost sight of; but many seek 
notoriety, and, if they can write a love-tale, or pen half-a-dozen 
stanzas, are pleased to become the gaudy centre of the public 
gaze. There is too great a propensity among them to make 
duties abroad, and the womanly attributes are sacrificed to this 
desire for notoriety. A refined man then feels that something 
of beauty has gone forth from her. Woman should only cul- 
tivate whatever is distinctly womanly. When she begins to 
talk of rights, she becomes, not manly, but man-ish. She seeks 
notoriety; man seeks fame. 

The lecturer then spoke of a less public life being favorable 
to intellectual culture. Even in the male sex, some of the most 
interesting minds have been of this retired character. A visitor 
at such a fireside realizes that here is sitting a wise man. 

The true woman is a beautiful being. I pray she may not 
turn iconoclast, and break the image of man's lower worship. 
Let her be content to be the softener of the manlier soul, and 
not come with us into the strife of the world. Let her not 
come into the glare of the sun ; but when the sun goes down, let 
her appear to grow brighter, like the stars, as the sun recedes. 
Let her not strive to be the sun, but rather the gentle moon, 
with face veiled at first, but growing, brighter. We watch for 
her coming, and still call her the new moon. 

This lecture was followed by an opposition lecture by Miss 
Lucretia Mott, who with great ability confuted some of the 
constrictions of Mr. Dana. She acknowledged the truth of the 
reasons given by him for the exclusion of women from public 
affairs, but contended that these reasons were as obnoxious to 
the participation of the men as they were to the women; and 
that if women were allowed to participate in them, the na- 
ture and essence of her character would perhaps overcome, if 

158 WOMAN. 

not wholly remove these objections. There is much force in 
this argument. There is no instance of any public occasion, 
professing to be decent, in -which woman has taken part, that 
generated disorder and violence, while these constantly occur 
in the congregations of men professing to be respectable. 

Women know their control over men, and use the most con- 
summate skill in the exercise of this power. 

The wife of an officer of considerable rank discovered that 
his re-election by a legislative body was in some peril. 

He had numerous and powerful friends, amongst whom was 
an old Quaker gentleman of standing, who became displeased 
with the gay habits of the incumbent. 

The wife knew her husband's failings ; she placed a high 
value upon the dignity and franchise of his office. She knew 
that it would be indiscreet to defy scrutiny ; and resolved upon 
a stratagem, in which she appealed to the sympathies of the 
Quaker and his wife. 

The story is told by the old Quaker himself, as follows : — 

" I had voted for Lemuel twice, and influenced others to vote 
for him. I had known his father, and was glad to see him at 
the head of affairs, with a salary and fees worth some six or 
eight thousand dollars a year. 

" They said he played and drank too much. 

" I inquired very carefully, and I thought it was worse than 
it had been reported. 

"When spoken to again upon the subject, I raised a com- 
mittee, and selected another candidate. 

"This was soon buzzed about; for we made no secret of 
what we had done, nor the reasons for it. 

" The next day Lemuel called on me. 

" I thought he looked impudent. His bad conduct came to 
my mind, and I was about to give him a lecture, when he said, 
' 3Ir. Lukins, do you know my wife V I replied, ' Yes, cer- 
tainly I know thy wife. I knew her father and mother very 
well j her mother was my cousin ; her parents once belonged 
to the old South Meeting. Thee knows all this very well. 
Why, what dost thou ask me that question for V 

" < Why/ said Lemuel, ' Rachel says she wants to see you ; 
I do not know what for. She would not tell me ; but she told 
me to ask you if she should call on you, or if you would be so 
kind as to pay her a visit this evening after tea.' I told him 
yes, I would go. This kind a flurried my politics. 

WOMAN. 159 

" Lemuel said good-by, and bowed with a sort of pleasant 
and respectful look, as he did when he was a boy, and went off. 

" Somehow, I thought his face did not look so red as it did 
when he came in. 

"I went home, and told my wife the whole story; and she 
took the cudgels up for me at once. Said she, ' Philip, thee 
is now in years, and they look up to thee. Don't thee be 
coaxed off from thy duty j do it firmly. Go and see Rachel. 
I'll be bound it's about politics. I don't blame her to find and 
hide for Lemuel. She has no art. Do thou pinch her hard, 
and she will own up. I do not think she would tell a falsehood. 
Ask her, Philip, if Lemuel drinks liquor, or plays with dice- 
boxes. If he does, turn him out. Go and see. I declare I 
am so curious to know !' 

" Well, I went ; Rachel let me in. She had on a plain cap, 
and her baby was in her arms. She had three dear, clean, 
sweet children. I took up the other two; and she said — 'It 
is so kind in thee to come and see me ; I wanted to see thee so 

" ' Why,' said I, 'thee talks with friends !' 

" ' Certainly/ said she; 'why not ? I always went so; and 
Lemuel has consented to let me bring up my children that way.' 

" ' Is thee not my uncle ?' said the oldest boy to me. ' Why V 
said I. ' Why,' said he, ' because mother said she named me 
after thee ; and that thee was my uncle.' 

"'Well,' said Rachel, 'now don't think me trying to curry 
in, for this. I have not seen thee since I was at thy house 
when I was a child ; and thee had father read out for helping 
build that fort in the last war. And father and mother are 
both dead ; and I have no relations but thee and Lemuel; and 
so when my first child was born, he let me name him after 
thee. And I thought some time thee might know it, and it 
would make thee forgive my dear father. 

" 'And as thee was so much older than I was, I thought it was 
more respectful to call thee uncle; and it seemed to turn out 
right ; for Lemuel says thee has been his fast friend ; and he 
would not have held his office so long, there is so many wants 
it, if it had not been for thy influence. And now thee has 
turned against him; but I am sure thee has not done so 
from spite, but because thee has been told that he has bad 

'"And so I told him to ask thee to let me speak to thee. 

160 WOMAN. 

Thee must not be offended, and think it forward in me; but 
let me tell thee that Lemuel is slandered by his enemies, to get 
him turned out; he does not drink spirits. 

" ' I will tell thee all about it. He has his faults. He went 
to the theatre four times last winter; and he insisted upon my 
going, on account of company here that went; but he has not 
been this winter; and says he will not ask me to go again. 

" 'And he has had several large parties. He says that gen- 
tlemen invite him, and that this is expected from him. They 
eat, and drink, and play cards, smoke cigars, stay late, and dirty 
the room all over. 

" ' He says thee came once or twice, a little bit.' 

" ' Yes/ said I, ' but I did not stay long.' 

" 'Well/ said she, 'I wish thee had staid it out, and seen 
for thyself 

"She continued: 'I suppose this is fashionable; but it is 
very disagreeable to me ; and I find all my female friends, whose 
husbands have these parties, dislike them too. 

" 'I do not think they are genteel; although I am sure there 
is no gaming in our house; and that Lemuel does not smoke, or 
get in liquor. 

" ' He comes in to me often, while the company is here. 

" 'I have watched and listened; it would set me distracted, 
if such things happened; and I am sure, yes I am certain, 
uncle Philip, that they do not gamble, and that Lemuel don't 
drink. But it is all wrong; and I told him something bad would 
come from it; and so there has; for I am satisfied that some 
of these very folks he has feasted here are his enemies; and 
that they have raised these reports, and set thee against him, 
to get him put out of his office.' 

" Kachel told this tale so mildly and artlessly, and with such 
evident sincerity, that every suspicion I had against her husband 
was banished. 

"I was a good deal moved; and as she paused, I looked at 
little Philip, a most intellectual, lovely boy, about ten years old, 
who was earnestly gazing on me, with his eyes full of tears. 

"I kissed the two boys; let them off my knees; kissed Rachel 
and her baby; and asked her if she went first days to old South 

"She said, 'Yes.' 'Does thee take thy children?' She 
said, 'Yes.' 'Well/ said I, 'Rachel, fare thee well; fare- 
well, children: Rachel, sit still; thee need not come to the door. 

WOMAN. 161 

I will tell my wife to come and see thee to-morrow or next 

" As I went out, little Philip held fast to my hand with both 
his hands; and in a low tone, with great feeling, said: 'My 
father is no drunkard, or gambler; he loves mother and us, and 
he is a gentleman/ 

"Well, I went home, and told my wife all the particulars, 
just as they had occurred, and just as I had always told her 
everything that ever happened to me; and waited for her 

"After a bit, said I, 'Elizabeth, what hast thou got to say 
to all this?' 'Why/ said she, 'is that child really named 
Philip?' 'Yes,' said I, 'there is no doubt of it; and Rachel 
goes every first day with her children to old South Meeting.' 

" 'And had on a plain cap? I wonder if she did not put that 
on for thee.' 

" 'Oh no,' said I; 'she is dressed plainer than the gay 
friends, and uses our speech. I think it is all real, and that 
she told me the truth about the parties they had.' 

" ' Yes/ said Elizabeth, ' but see what evil comes from these 
vain and worldly practices ! Philip, thee "must never go again 
to these vile assemblings of the wicked. I should not wonder 
if they had thee up for a blackleg and a sucker too. As to 
Lemuel, I guess he is the best of them all; and so, if I was 
thee, I would see that he got re-elected; just to disappoint that 
covetous set, that are trying to injure Rachel and her children/ " 

But it must be borne in mind that the stimulating induce- 
ments for this potent and mysterious power of woman can be 
excited by nothing but marriage. 

With this, all the concordant elements of nature combine to 
produce reciprocal sympathies, and without it all the affections 
of the heart disunite and fall apart. 

Marriage gives the parties, per se, an independent rank in 
all reputable society. 

As a general rule, the wife holds the peace and character of 
her husband and children wholly in her hands. By patience, 
persuasion, and example she can control them all, spite of their 
bad habits and froward tempers. There is no such thing as 
these virtues being wholly disregarded by husband or children. 

The latent influence of a good wife and mother is impercep- 
tible. There is a species of moral fear and instinctive reverence 


162 WOMAN. 

for her in the bosom of her husband and children ; and while 
she maintains this dignified dominion of purity and love, the 
rank and standard of her domestic sway will remain unchanged. 

If her husband is idle, intemperate, or criminal, or her chil- 
dren are rebellious and wicked, still the respectability of her 
domicil is looked to by the public with deference, and her 
family, however censurable their conduct, will be countenanced 
on her account. 

There are husbands naturally brutal and heartless towards 
their wives, but the instances are rare indeed in which even 
wicked and dissolute men hold their homes in aversion. 

It is a part of the selfish nature of every human being, as 
it is of dumb beasts, to fall back upon their shed or their hovel, 
and to cherish its shelter and its associations. It is not neces- 
sary that there should be ardent love, or the fascinations of 
beauty and passion, to induce this instinctive preference with 
man or beast. The sources of this instinct are found in the 
urgent occasions for repose and refreshment, and in sickness and 

With the exceptions referred to, there is no husband but 
may be soothed, coaxed, and subdued by an industrious and 
faithful wife. If she tempers love and duty with a generous 
spirit of respect and kindness, ministers to his wants, abstains 
from reproach, derision, and fault-finding; honors, encourages, 
sustains, and ratifies his whims, employs her rights mysterious 
of the nuptial tie, " Besides that hook of winning fairness which 
strikes the eye" (Cyrnbeline, act v. s. 5), she will soon coil her 
silken cords and witching charms about his soul, beguile and 
win his fierce desires, and finally turn his vagrant sensuality to 
constancy and virtuous love. 

All this was done by Eve, which made her Adam's second 
self in sapless age. And where else can she rest the sole of 
her foot but in this last spot and refuge ordained by GrOD for 
woman ? 

If she finds her husband a brute, without the sensibilities of 
humanity, or if there exists any insurmountable repugnance 
towards him, cut the knot, abjure and quit him; but if be will 
come home, if he is not in grit and grain worse than a reptile, 
if she has not been betrayed by, and has children to him, and 
the reasons for leaving him are not imperious, what can she 
gain by quarreling? There is no rational alternative but to 
quit in peace, or stay and submit. Let what will come, bear 

WOMAN. 163 

it all, or go. Attempt no reformation or subjugation by force, 
violence, or domination. 

This is unnatural, repulsive, and revolting. 

Every step in this path of madness and folly widens the 
breach, increases aversion, disgust, and hatred, until in self- 
defence and anger the husband deserts his wife, or turns her 
out of his house. 

This catastrophe, in ninety-nine cases out of one hundred, is 
occasioned by the wife's imprudence, for which the world, and 
especially the sensible part of her own sex, most justly condemn 

In the scene of domestic turmoil, where she beats the kettle- 
drum of discord, much more when she breaks up the social 
compact, what comes of the children but utter discomfiture ? 

What prudent, well-bred man or woman will venture to marry 
a son or daughter whose mother could not live with her husband ? 
and where it is found out, and it never can be concealed, that 
that mother has superadded to her perfidy an extortion for sub- 
sistence off of the hard earnings of her husband as the price 
of his expatriation from her tortures, this forever stamps the 
last mark of public contempt and scorn upon her suicidal 

Woman, thou art made for peace, love, and duty, and not 
for strife or dictation ! Thou art the gentle dew of Heaven, 
which freshens and cherishes the verdant grass and the fragrant 
flower, and not the roaring furious torrent, to sweep them away ! 

Thou art the living warmth and the glorious light from the 
skies, to vivify and brighten, and not the fire to consume, or 
the darkness for despair ! 

Thou art the celestial paradise of man, and not the serpent 
to sting and poison his or thy felicity ! Love him, or leave him; 
quit him, or cleave unto him. Beguile, bewitch, and charm him 
as thou wilt, but fret him not. Banish thyself forever from 
his presence, or bear in silence all that thy fate ordains. 

This secret power and dominion, which women so well know 
they can triumphantly hold over man, are essentially blended 
with their nature. 

They are conscious of its possession, and by instinct antici- 
pate its strength and success with the confidence of maturity 
and experience, even in the tender years of budding infancy. 

Allan Ramsay, in his Gentle Shepherd (Act i. s. 2), inspires 
Peggy, an artless and simple mountain shepherdess, with these 

164 WOMAN. 

beautiful and characteristic transports of her ardent soul. Peggy 
breathes the faultless aspirations of her whole sex: and it will 
be seen that the glowing picture of her wild and frantic imagi- 
nation, chaste and brilliant, is sure and true from the first line 
and tint down to the last dark shadows of life. 

The warm emotions of her heaving bosom gently breathe 
forth these lambent expressions : — 

But in whispers let us ken 

That men were made for us, an' we for men." 

And again — 

" I'll rin the risk, no ha - £ I only fear, 
But rather think ilk langsome day or year, 
'Till I wi' pleasure mount my bridal bed, 
Where on my Patty's breast I'll lean my bead." 

And when she is cautioned by Jenny against indulging in 
this ecstasy of rapture, she banishes all doubts, and says — 

" There's some men constanter in love than we ; 
They'll reason calmly, an' wi' kindness smile, 
When our short passions wad our peace beguile ; 
Sae when sae'er they slight their maiks at hame 
It's ten to one the wives air maist to blame." 

And then, wrapped up in thrilling love, she lifts to Heaven 
her pure and virgin vow, and exclaims — 

" There I'll employ, wi' pleasure, a' my art, 
To keep him cheerfu', an' secure his heart: 
A' e'en when weary frae the hill, 
I'll ha' a' things made ready to his will; 
In winter, when he toils thro' wind and rain, 
A bleesing ingle an' a' clear hearthstane; 
Clean bag-a-bag I'll spread upon his board, 
And serve him with the best we can afford ; 
Good humor an' white biganets shall be 
Guards to my face, to keep his love to me: 

We'll grow auld together, an' ne'er find 

The lass of youth, when love grows on the mind: 
Bairns an' their bairns mak' sure a firmer tye 
Than aught in love the life of us can spy." 

So that it is seen that this wonderful and triumphant power 
of woman over man is essentially subservient to, and exclu- 
sively depends upon, his concessions, his wants, and his impreg- 
nable passions ; that its sway is contingent and transient, and 

WOMAN. 165 

does not spring from the almighty design, or the superior facul- 
ties of her special and marvelous creation. 

And that, with the apparent inconsistencies of her mysteri- 
ous character, there are blended the most sublime and perplex- 
ing attributes of feebleness and strength, of weakness and 
power, of purity and craft, of love and hatred, of seraphic light 
and withering darkness ; and that the bright or lowering de- 
velopments of these faculties are like the rich and delicate 
strings of a well- tuned harp, which bring joy or discord, as 
they are rudely or chastely struck. 



Marriage essential for both — Only sexually different — Perish in celibacy — 
Friendship between same sex — Love only between different sexes — 
Cannot be forced apart, or together — Love is the tie, and it is irre- 
spective of poverty, mind, orpurity — Passion — Taste — Affinities — Invin- 
cible — Temptations — Indulgence — Tricks — Frauds — If sinister motive 
with one or both — Can't be hid after trial — Different nations — Prefer- 
ences, and appreciations — Laws against bigamy, incest, seduction, do no 
good — All dissimilarities yield to love — Women better than men — Fa- 
miliarity with indulgence drawback on matrimonial happiness — Those 
married early are mutually pure and happy — Ignorance is bliss, &c. — 
No peace, if doubt — No duplicate man or woman should be about — In- 
voluntary thoughts — Married persons — Circumspection — Danger of un- 
equal matches. 

On the moral and physical developments of the sexes de- 
pends their harmonious intercourse; and whenever either sex 
has been by itself, however numerous, pure, and benevolent, all 
their moral, mental, and physical energies have worn away to 
monastic misanthropy ; they become greedy cormorants or use- 
less drones. 

There is involved in this branch of curious and interesting 
philosophy no obscurity : it is explained by a correct knowledge 
of a few plain facts, entirely within the reach of every person 
of ordinary understanding. 

The dissimilarity between the sexes is not so great as it is 
at first view supposed. 

The difference in their dress, the rugged surface of one, and 
the soft texture of the other, the parts they separately perform 
in the production and care of their offspring, raise the idea of 
a more positive distinction than that which really exists be- 
tween them. 

Their occupations make no difference, for these are variously 
performed by them in different countries. 


In some places, the men do the work, and pursue the occupa- 
tions which are done by the women in other places. 

Their infancy, maturity, constitutions, habits, maladies, 
wants, passions, and appetites are alike; the difference' between 
them makes them mutually dependent, and increases the occa- 
sions for their intercourse and intimacy. 

The delicate sympathies of the woman towards man flatter 
his pride and soothe his hours of care ; while her weakness and 
timidity find confidence and security in his sterner nature. 

And thus their apparent inconsistencies are wisely made un- 
consciously to suit their respective deficiencies of character. 

The concurring tones of the same sex produce jars and dis- 
cord ; whereas there is harmony with the low keys of one and 
the dulcet notes of the other. 

Between men there can only be friendship, not love ; so, too, 
between women ; but between man and woman there is exqui- 
site and rapturous love. 

These apparent discrepancies have no control over the sensi- 
bilities and preferences. 

There is no other tie so strong, so deep, and lasting. 

Religion may be more devout, but not more fervent than 
love ; it may be more pure, but not more sincere ; it may be 
more calm and holy, but not more enthusiastic and resolute. 

Love pervades alike the hearts of the good and the bad, and 
is wholly blind and indifferent to the conduct and character of 
its object. 

There is disinterested purity in love. 

Pure men have loved most fondly and devotedly unchaste 
and licentious women ; and the best women have, with reli- 
gious fidelity and truth, followed to the prison and the gibbet 
the most cruel and dissolute men. 

There is to this infatuation no stint from poverty, crime, in- 
firmity, or opposition ; all these increase its ardor, and fan up 
the never-dying flame of true and genuine love. It is a redeem- 
ing and heavenly principle of our common nature, but often 
made subservient to avarice and lust. 

Under the dissimulations of love, base, cowardly, and heart- 
less villainies have been perpetrated ; spotless virgins have been 
despoiled of honor and every earthly hope; fraudulent mar- 
riages have been put upon innocent and confiding females, fol- 
lowed by neglect, insult, treachery, and false and scandalous 
pretexts for conjugal and fraternal repudiation and banishment ; 


and sudden and rash marriages have been contracted without 

Policy and art will not supply the place of affection ; their 
disguise is impracticable to each and both. 

Truth and sincerity lie at the foundation of love ; its voice 
and purity speak with miraculous organs through every me- 
dium from the soul. 

After the eyes are opened, it is an inspiration which cannot 
be assumed or dissembled by either to the other, or to one's 
self; therefore, after the natural affinities are blunted, there 
never is any misunderstanding upon this subject by any one, 
however ignorant. 

Both know for themselves if it be or be not true love, and 
neither can conceal this truth from the other. 

If both are false, either from rank, fraud, or by mistake, they 
should be frank and separate, for marriage then is iniquity. 

If one, being true, is deceived, agony unutterable must fol- 
low : for pure love, perhaps, but seldom fades away ; it is like 
charity, which beareth all things. 

Wild and promiscuous desire worships at a secret shrine ; it 
is sensual, delights in novel, fierce, and frolicksome impulses ; 
but love lifts up its hands and heart to Heaven. 

It is the rich unction given for hope and joy to husband, 
wife, parent, child, brother, and sister. 

Its power and scope are governed by the temperament alone, 
and are indifferent to wealth, wisdom, and honor. 

The songs of refined, and the ballads of rustic love, are alike 
harmonious and sweet. 

The conjugal affections and the ties of consanguinity are as 
ripe and faithful with the ignorant savage, the hardened 
criminal, and the starving beggar, as they are with the wise, 
the just, and the wealthy. 

Instances of the devotion of wives and husbands, parents 
and children, and other relations, in all these grades ; and of 
one, elevated by all that is good, giving succor, and clinging to 
the other, steeped in guilt and infamy, from the days of the 
prodigal son, have occurred so often as to place these impulses 
at a point far above all moral or religious motives. 

They are irrespective of riches and poverty, learning and 
ignorance, good and evil, beauty and deformity, youth and age, 
sickness and health. 

We are not, perhaps, in all these respects, blind, except as 


we appear so to those who have opposite tastes or views : that 
is, we do not see or estimate things through the same medium 

Our prejudices, employments, and education, in matters of 
business, and in relation to everything in which the choice is 
concerned, make us sometimes appear ridiculous to each other. 

A master carpenter and a lawyer were passengers on board 
a steamboat, when the lawyer asked the carpenter if he had 
any news, to which the carpenter replied, with a deep sigh, 

"Yes indeed, to be sure; why, I am surprised that you have 
not heard of it; certainly, it is an awful matter— this strike, 
'from six to six, or die V with the journeymen, is a subject 
of great magnitude; there is no telling where it may end." 

"Poh !" says the lawyer, "that is nothing; I asked you if 
there was any news." 

"Oh, no/' said the carpenter; "no, I have no news about 
politics, accidents, &c; no, I have not heard any. Do you 
know of anything new, sir ?" 

"Indeed I do/' said the lawyer; "did you see an article in 
the June number of the Law Journal, in which the decision of 
our Supreme Court about tavern licenses and moving court- 
houses has been reviewed by the Supreme Court of Connec- 
ticut, in a mandamus before them about a school-house ? You 
ought to read it, and see how that Yankee judge overhauls our 
court ; it is a rouser." 

" Why," says the former, "do you call that news? — I thought 
news was something that would make everybody wonder. Who 
cares about the courts? — they arc always contradicting each 
other, and that is nothing new." 

At this moment stepped up a bonnet and shoe-dealer, to whom 
the lawyer said, " Well, Mr. Harkins, how do you do? This is 
a fine day we have, to go down to Cape May. Have vou anv 
news, Mr. Harkins?" J J 

"Well," said Harkins; "yes, I thank you, I am pretty well; 
— I have no news, but I have been doing a very fair business 
this spring;— pretty fair, you may say;— not so good as last 
fall; — but I have no right to complain." 

All of these wonder-stricken gentlemen were to each other 
most ridiculous; — to themselves, or each one with his own 
craft, they would have been no doubt very interesting; because 
they saw the objects that respectively caught their thoughts 
through different mediums. 

These are the varieties of taste as to the ordinary affairs of 


life in which there is no excitement beyond that of familiar 

But where the keen appetites and bad passions arc concerned, 
is it wonderful that one should look with complacency and de- 
light upon that which is disgusting to another? and that the 
voice, the manner, the person, loathing to some, should be 
graceful and delicious to others? 

This apparent contradiction, but harmony, sometimes physi- 
cally too, and unknown to the parties, prevails mysteriously in 
all the connections between men and women, and thus the 
heterogeneous mass are matched and accommodated; while all 
these wonderful discordants, when the parties suit, are thus 
turned from jargon into peace; like the edges of two same teeth 
saws, which tear each other in total ruin until matched, when 
they become one solid plate. 

There is no force, no law that has ever changed or altered 
this obstinate and resolute caprice of nature. 

There is no decree of the church, nor judgment of a court, 
that can force a man and woman to live asunder; — if they will, 
it shall not be so; — or make them live together, if they choose 
to live separate. 

All laws imposing penalties upon these subjects have been 
total failures. 

They have never reformed any one, nor have they ever had 
the sympathies of the public. 

Trials for divorce and crim. con. are infamous exposures, which 
should be forever stopped. 

Bigamy is beastly lust, and double-faced fraud, and should 
be crushed down with unmitigated rigor. 

Kelations who are able should support their kindred, if pau- 
pers; but beyond these domestic derelictions the law, as a re- 
medy by way of reformation or punishment, is an affectation of 
power which belongs not to man. 

With all the eccentricities in the character and dominion of 
love, it is still an overruling tie. It quietly gets up and firmly 
establishes queer and strangely assorted matches; and settles 
down permanently for life millions of the most turbulent and 
inti actable. 

It is the great bond of conservative and concretive safety, 
without which our race would perish, and all the moral elements 
of this world would fall into chaos. 

Keligious constraint and family discipline have sought in 


vain to establish some code or rule by which marriages should 
be governed. . 

Similarity of ages, education, habits, religion, condition, na- 
tion, and tongue, bas been suggested as essential for this seri- 
ous, solemn change — a step that involves considerations of 
greater magnitude than any event in life. 

And yet, all these rules of obvious discretion are utterly dis- 
regarded, and the most precipitous and reckless nuptials just 
as often turn out as well as tbose taken with great delibera- 

Those who do not speak the same language, different reli- 
gions, old and young, rich and poor, Jew, Christian, and Pagan, 
marry and permanently live together, with and without the 
forms of marriage, under circumstances of mutual confidence 
and harmony that bid defiance to all the theories of reason and 
morals, and triumphantly sustain the certainty, that love, secret, 
invincible, and eternal love, is indifferent to morals, laws, learn- 
ing, and refinement; and that it is the germ and root of all the 
fruits and shades of paradise. _ . 

The desires and propensities of men and women, it is seen, 
do not materially differ, although in some other respects they 
are essentially different. 

There is much more purity of conduct and character witli 
women than men. They are almost wholly free from very 
many of the vices of men. 

The dissolute of both sexes are generally destitute _ot all 
shame. But of the men and women who make pretensions to 
respectability, the women have a decided advantage over the 

men. . , . 

It is not a practice with this class of women to get intoxi- 
cated: whereas men openly get drunk, chew and smoke tobacco, 
use profane and obscene language, lie, cheat, swindle, gamble, 
debauch, and maraud. , 

Women are free from these vices ; they stay at home, do 
their work, nurse and educate their children, and mind their 
business better than men do. 

They take no part in riots, brawls, fights, duels, open lewd- 
ness, and other atrocities, as men, who pretend to be genteel 
and respectable, do with impunity; and to all which brutalities 
their mothers, sisters, wives, and daughters are expected to sub- 
mit without a murmur. 


They are more economical, waste less money, go to church, 
and practice pure piety, more than the men do. 

Thousands of men professing to be gentlemen, presidents, 
cashiers, secretaries, treasurers, merchants, directors, and func- 
tionaries of institutions, and pew-holders in churches, who 
demand consideration as persons of respectable standing, and 
would indignantly resent an insinuation to the contrary, at their 
own houses, and at club and gaming-houses, debauch and gam- 
ble; and very many of them are constantly indulging this pro- 
pensity, not for genteel excitement, but for the express and 
sordid purpose of winning money. 

Thousands secretly depend on this infamous occupation for 
the support of their families; and thousands who are husbands 
and fathers are guilty of open infidelity. 

These are practices tolerated and winked at by men of the 
world, who do not allow each other to suffer in their business 
or standing on that account. 

They are never referred to in the estimate or criterion of 
private character; and when named, are universally held as 
gossip or malevolence in the speaker. 

If men are outwardly decent, support their families, and keep 
their contracts, they cannot afford to criticise too closely upon 
each other's private affairs. 

The bare suspicion of any such crimes with a woman would 
perpetually blast and damn her name, and forever banish her 
from all decent society. 

How comes this distinction, this remarkable difference in the 
morals and habits of the sexes ? 

There is one sufficient reason for it ; and it is a rule that, 
when one adequate cause for an effect is shown, no other reason 
need be required. 

It is not necessary to hold that women are naturally better 
than men, and less incliued to evil — although, perhaps, all his- 
tory proves this to be true — to account for this undeniable dif- 
ference between men and women. 

Because the whole secret is abundantly explained in the fact 
that, in early life, men are exposed to temptations which women 
are free from. 

That men become familiar with sin and lose restraint; while 
women are more away from exposure and temptation. 

Whenever women have been exposed to temptation, and are 
wickedly inclined, and have an opportunity, they are as aban- 


doncd as men in that which is incident to their propensities; 
not really worse than men, although a wicked woman seems to 
be worse than a wicked man, because she is more crafty, and 
can, with apparent impunity, impose upon the credulity-of men. 

A bad woman loses more hold upon society than a man ; and 
the contrast is more striking, because it is unusual, and also 
because, being more feeble, she sooner and more seriously suf- 
fers from vice than men do. 

It does not follow that, on this account, men are all worse 
than women; for men who have been morally and carefully 
reared, particularly in the country, who marry young, and free 
from pollution, are as exemplary as their wives: they are then 
upon a footing with women who are unexposed. 

So that men and women respectably brought up everywhere, 
and men unpolluted by indulgence, are generally alike, pure, 
and free from vice. 

The great secret for every species of preservation and deliver- 
ance from sin is not to know it. 

It is guilt enough to be annoyed and beset by the vile and 
involuntary ruminations that perpetually beset and haunt the 
mind, whether asleep or awake ; wicked, infamous, secret, dis- 
gusting thoughts, which no one can keep off or put down, and 
which burn the modest cheek with shame. 

"Ignorance is bh'ss where it is folly to be wise;" and the great 
and essential security is an unceasing prayer to be delivered 
from temptation. 

If either husband or wife, or both, are unchaste, or ever 
have been, it blunts the keen edge of pure and mutual love. 

Familiarity with indulgence generates a fondness for novelty 
so strong, that reformation is inconsistent with our depraved 
propensities, which, being whet up by secret indulgence, gene- 
rally give way without remorse as long as the opportunities 
and power for perpetration last. 

There can be no real happiness between married persons 
where there is real or suspected infidelity. 

Men suffer no qualifications or excuse for the familiarities of 
other men with their wives; it is held to be an unpardonable 
insult to their honor, and death to the marriage vow. 

What, then, must be the bitter pangs of a virtuous wife— sur- 
rounded with her children, and no other place to fly to but the 
„ rave __to doubt not her husband's faith to his family, for his 
nride will keep him there ; but to feel and know that the corner- 
1 1.5* 


stone of his plighted love has slipped away, and that she is 
postponed for another? 

No duplicate man or woman should ever be about the habi- 
tation, -or in the family of husband and wife, upon terms of 

The most atrocious seductions have thus happened. 

Not even relations : none but children and dependents should 
live in intimacy together. 

If aged parents, and poor relations, much more cousins, 
friends, companions, students, &c, demand charity, give it to 
them from the closet or the purse; but let them not be inmates, 
to blend their thin and crafty subtleties betwixt man and wife. 

In all families, the familiarities of a common hearthstone, 
with kindly looks and words, imperceptibly get up an ofT-guard. 
and dangerous companionship. 

Sin and temptation secretly lie in the path, and may betray. 

Even if no real harm is meant or done, suspicions and terri- 
ble doubts may be raised; and bitterness and sorrow come from 
harmless looks and words. 

Into the domicile of a married man no one should ever come 
without knocking, nor remain for pretended business, or covert 
visit; it is a holy, consecrated temple, where no one should have 
home or toleration but children and servants, and their natural 

If husbands and wives will honestly and truly dedicate them- 
selves in mutual, cheerful, willing faith, no poverty, remorse, or 
shame will hurt their holy home; and death will come, not as 
a messenger of alarm, but with healing on his wings, and glad 
and rapturous songs of heavenly joy. 

It has been said that no code of laws can be devised, or creed 
of religion formed, free from the liabilities of abuse; that the 
depravity of man perverts every good thing to some wicked 

If this rule applies to civil and religious institutions, it would 
seem to prevail with tenfold force against marriage, which was 
manifestly designed to furnish infinite happiness and felicity to 
man; for in all times it has been made the instrument of the 
basest fraud and oppression. 

In this connection, Thackaray ironically says : 

" To know nothing or little is in the nature of some hus- 
bands; to hide is the nature of how many women. 

" Oh, ladies ! how many of you have surreptitious milliners' 


bills ? how many of you have gowns and bracelets which you 
dare not show, or which you wear trembling? trembling, and 
coaxing with smiles the husband by your side, who does not 
know the new velvet gown from the old one, or the new brace- 
let from the last year's, or has any notion that the ragged-look- 
ing yellow lace scarf cost forty guineas, and that Madam Bobe- 
nat is writing dunning letters every week for the money. 

" This class of women do not give their husbands anything, 
but compel them to give them all. This is a bargain not un- 
frequently levied in love." 

A grave and serious remark or two may be profitably made 
upon the subject of these abuses. 

No gallantry or false notions of delicacy should screen from 
notice the artifices employed by either side. 

Marriage is a sacred and a solemn contract, which should 
never be desecrated or profaned for sinister, sordid, or sensual 

The delinquencies of men have been referred to, and those 
of the women may be touched upon. 

Passion, which is blind and impetuous, is too often mistaken 
for love ; passion and love, in some respects, are synonymous. 
The word love is sometimes used to express the idea of refined 
and sincere affection, in contradistinction to mere passion. 

The instances are rare in which the young, however they claim 
credit for being under the dominion of love, are able to give a 
rational explanation of it in the sense in which they affect to 
understand it. 

. Take, for example, a young man in love; he is wholly igno- 
rant of and indifferent to the real attributes of a lovely woman: 
good sense, religion, patient and cheerful industry, economy, 
cleanliness, love of home, humility, and unaffected resolute, and 
spotless chastity. 

These cardinal and essential female virtues are wholly over- 
looked amid restless excitement and feverish rapture, perhaps 
encouraged by permission and proximities unauthorized by the 
laws of female discretion. 

Under these licentious influences, millions of men are en- 
snared into secret intrigues, and coaxed and terrified into hasty 
and clandestine marriages. 

In a short time, the delusions vanish, and they then find 
themselves fastened for life to one who, perhaps, they cannot 


love or respect, and who may be altogether destitute of the true 
elements of* an honorable and virtuous woman. 

Then come distrust, suspicion, neglect, anger, recrimination, 
infidelity, strife, hatred, violence, and separation. 

If anything but disappointment and discomfiture results from 
such matches, it is wholly accidental. 

The only security for pure marriage, felicity, and honor is a 
mutual contribution by the parties of the before-mentioned vir- 
tues, together with all the appropriate and suitable mental and 
personal affections and affinities. 

The most careful and effectual efforts should be previously 
made by both parties to ascertain their qualifications in these 
important respects. With all these precautions, they may be 

Contrivance, craft, and subtlety are constantly employed to 
mislead, captivate, and beguile young men into marriage. 

The vices and depravities of females are concealed, their vir- 
tues magnified, false representations are made of their property 
and expectations; devices are practiced to bring them in the 
way of respectable men, and the most sensual means are secretly 
employed to entrap them. 

If the fraud fails, seduction is charged, and pistols are invoked 
for extortion. If it succeeds, and the husband revolts, combi- 
nations are formed to bully and frighten, and wring from his 
timid indiscretion stipends for the wedded pauper and her va- 
grant associates to feed and fatten upon, by which the perse- 
cuted husband is condemned to Coventry and bondage for life. 

To these numerous cases of thieving and plunder, in the name 
of marriage and religion, may be added millions of instances in 
which the complacency and cowardice of the husband are taken 
advantage of by a bold and heartless wife, who spends her life 
in laziness and extravagance, compels him to provide for her 
prodigality by forcing him to run in debt, or covertly running 
him in debt herself, until his character and credit are blasted, 
when he is dunned, chased, and persecuted by those he owes — 
goaded to madness, commits frauds and forgeries, and finally 
wreaks his vengeance upon his creditors by their secret, brutal 
murder. A distinguished instance of this character, it is said, 
recently occurred in a Northern State. 

If marriage is a paradise when all things combine for its 
fruition, so it is a hell when it is agitated by discord and 


Thousands of educated and respectable young men spend half 
their lives in degrading and perilous pursuits for wealth and 
fortune, and afterwards forget their proud position in society, 
and marry low-bred women, under the impulse and incitements 
of passion, who could mate themselves with ladies of virtue, 
rank, and fortune, if they would be guided by a spirit of honora- 
ble pride, and delicately approach respectable women with the 
modest and respectful impulses of true gentleness, instead of 
surrendering themselves to a brutish and reckless intercourse 
with artful and sordid women, of loose and licentious propen- 

The pride of the eye and the lust of the flesh may be tem- 
porarily accommodated with the latter; but the pure elements 
of self-respect, conjugal happiness, the rich blessings of an ho- 
norable and happy home, will be best found with those whose 
nuptial vows are made by hearts and hands with spotless 

High-minded and proudly born females sometimes use great 
affectation of refinement and purity on the occasion of conjugal 
disruption. They will not allow any room for excuse by the 
husband, or censure for themselves. He is ever shamefully and 
inhumanly in the wrong, and they are eminently spotless, dis- 
interested, humble, and injured. 

In their pleas, in proceedings against or by them for divorce, 
their appeals to the sympathies are mournful and melting ; but 
these tempests of anguish -soon subside. 

A brief probation, with intimations of permanent and certain 
settlement, wonderfully and speedily calms down their suffering 
sorrows. Imputations against their honor and purity, denied 
on oath in terms of horror, and resented with disdain and scorn, 
are compounded for by money ; the indignant traverse is with- 
drawn. The infamous and odious assault upon the spotless 
snow-drift of their fame is proved without opposition, published 
without remorse or shame, and an irrevocable decree of divorce 
proclaimed, and entered down upon the open records of the 

Money, sordid pelf, the hewer of wood and drawer of water, 
the champion between idleness and labor, poverty and inde- 
pendence, humility and pride, has healed, like Gilead's balm, 
the sharpest wounds to wedded honor. 

Single men and women have no business Intimately to inter- 


course with each other, when there is a difference in rank be- 
tween them; that is to say, a man has no right to associate with 
a woman beneath him, and so, too, with women. It necessarily 
puts the parties upon a dangerous footing. 

If the man is above the woman, she is flattered, unguarded, 
and therefore so much less secure; the man sees and feels it, 
and is tempted to take advantage of it more than he would ven- 
ture to do with his equal. 

This rule applies with much greater force to women. No one 
is sufficiently liberal to award proper motives to a woman who 
is seen upon terms of intimacy with a man beneath her. 

Unmarried persons have no occasion to be intimate in their 
intercourse. They should preserve the most rigid decorum in 
their communication. 

Under these restraints, all necessary facilities are afforded for 
the proper objects of company and conversation, as well as for 
a preliminary ascertainment of personal peculiarities, with a 
private view to marriage. 

Information as to character, family, &c. should be obtained 
from other sources. 

All intimacies that pass this line of circumspection, unless in 
courtship, are unfavorably looked at by others, implicate the 
reputation of the parties, excite false and sometimes fatal ex- 
pectations, and keep the parties out of the appropriate sphere 
of anti-nuptial correspondence with others. 

Married persons, when apart, and with those of the opposite 
sex, cannot be too guarded in their deportment. The slightest 
departure from strict formality gives room to suspicion and 

Respectable persons only are here referred to ; those not so 
follow their depraved propensities. 

By the term respectable are meant honesty, industry, integ- 
rity, and all the domestic virtues, without regard to wealth, 
poverty, occupation, or the refinements of education and fashion- 
able society. 

There is nothing improper or censurable in waiving all these 
conventional considerations in marriage, however important they 
are, for the future happiness of the parties. 

The refined and educated may, perhaps, improve and bring 
up the one behind; and love and sincere kindness may some- 
times overlook the difference. 

The stock of complacency must be very large, however, to 


dispense with very wide and palpable discrepancies, after the 
first ardor of nuptial novelty is over. 

Where the parties are upon an equal footing as to their re- 
spectability alone, the chances for accommodation are sometimes 
reasonable, but it is a risk which no discreet man or woman 
will venture upon. 

The contingencies of a long and precarious life are too chang- 
ing, fluctuating, and dangerous for this experiment. All things 
should be equal and fitting ; age, constitution, health, family, 
education, habits, taste, and prejudices, to secure harmony; even 
with all these, the charm often fails from natural and latent 
disaffinities ; after excitement is over, affection is wasted, or 
the climacteric, mental and physical changes, of time and age 

There is a delusion prevalent with men, that women be- 
low them — the daughters of mean, low-bred men, too lazy 
and stupid to better their condition, and too depraved to im- 
prove their minds and educate their children ; that a girl, bred 
and brought up in filth, menial employments, and loose compa- 
ny, because she appears to be modest, artless, and innocent, 
and is handsome and compliant, will be more likely to make a 
good wife, and to be reasonable in her aspirations for dress, 
company, and show, and more tight and thrifty with her house 
and family, than the well-bred and carefully educated daughter 
of intelligent and enterprising men, who, perhaps, by patient 
and prudent industry, have lifted themselves and their children 
from a humble condition up into the spheres of respectability 
and honorable distinction. 

The men who take the risk of this precarious and perilous 
experiment have no right to murmur if they are disappointed. 

It will be a mad and desperate defiance of the rules by which 
the impulses of discretion are respected in all other human un- 



Marriage — Should be early and suitable, and appropriate — Should abandon 
all old acquaintances and habits, for mutual affection and kindness — 
Equality — Open — Frank — No scolding — No concealment of character — 
If the object is sensual, no disguise — Why — Not so if marriage is in- 
tended — Should inquire carefully of the delicacy, temper, character, 
age — If rich, poor, inferior, deformed, or diseased — Query — When 
should not marry — Conspiracy for marriage — Miss Euphemia and Mr. 
Crawler — If both poor, or both rich — Or equal in their means, well 
— And herein, of poverty with one, and wealth with the other, Query — 
Secret humiliation — Excitement for marriage should be restrained until 
the proper pre-requisites are found out — Affinities and disaffinities — In- 
voluntary blindness while the passions last — Frauds by low families on 
respectable persons for fraudulent marriages — A case in point — Persons 
of inconsistent principles cannot agree — Judge Lewis' view of the phi- 
losophy of marriage. 

No man should entertain or encourage aspirations so extra- 
vagant as to defer marriage until he is able to support his 
wife, according to some fancied notions of living, above his 
present sphere and means. 

Let him hunt out a woman who is his equal in all the ap- 
propriate moral and social elements; who is heartily willing to 
begin the world with him upon a scale of domestic economy 
which he has the ability to support; whether that plan involves 
the limited accommodations of an unserved attic, a remote cot- 
tage, or a full-furnished dwelling. 

Let him prepare his mind to abandon all his old personal 
associations and indulgences; faithfully and industriously pur- 
sue his business ; maintain honest participations with his wife, 
in all his amusements and gratifications; give her his confi- 
dence; respect her opinions; persuade her kindly from her 
faults; and praise her motives and efforts; — and by his conduct 
and conversation, give her to feel that she is his equal. 

Revere and tenderly minister to all her maternal relations; — 


never scold, arraign, or reproach her ; and maintain in all things 
towards her the behavior of a gentleman — such as a well-bred 
man would hold towards his sainted mother and beloved sister. 
Let him freely and solemnly conform to these honorable and 
conservative resolutions. 

Let the woman be prepared to reciprocate with the man all 
these rational preparations for marriage; make herself an ex- 
ample of every female virtue; be cheerful, neat, modest, clean, 
industrious, saving, and thoroughly accomplished in all that 
constitutes, not a street stroller, a saloon promenader, a ball-room 
flirt, or a parlor belle — but in every perfect and winning quali- 
fication for an affectionate and faithful wife and mother. 

And then, let the man and woman have with each other a 
fair, free, full, and unreserved understanding; — waste no time, 
but get married; — the woman at eighteen or nineteen, and the 
man at twenty-one or twenty-two. Begin life at the right time, 
and the right age; and in the natural, proper, and honorable 
way; take position as a respectable member of the commu- 
nity; and fill the distinguished destiny God has offered to him, 
like a man of true pride. 

Marriage should not be hastily contracted. The parties 
should be certain that both are in earnest, and that they fully 
answer, and will honestly come up to, the foregoing require- 

Of this they should be certain; and that there is no covert 
design, or pursuit for property, or supposed family advantages; 
desire for sensual indulgences, or sinister objects; and then 
they should surrender their entire hearts to each other. 

The whole feeling with both should be unaffected, true, sin- 
cere, genuine, and reciprocal. 

Marriage. — "To honor marriage more yet, or rather to teach 
the married how to honor one another, it is said that the wife 
was made of the husband's rib; not of his head, for Paul calleth 
the husband the wife's head ; not of his foot, for he must not 
set her at his foot; the servant is appointed to serve, and his 
wife to help. If she must not match with the head, nor stoop 
at the foot, where shall he set her then? He must set her at 
his heart; and therefore she which should lie in his bosom was 
made in his bosom, and should be as close to him as his rib, 
of which she was fashioned." — Henry Smith's Sermons, p. 



"We see many times even the godly couples to jar when 
they are married, because there is some unfitness between them, 
which makes odds. What is odds but the contrary to even ? 
Therefore make them even, saith one, and there will be no odds. 
From hence came the first use of the King in weddings, to re- 
present this evenness : for if it be straiter than the finger, it 
will pinch ; and if it be wider than the finger, it will fall off; 
but if it be fit, it neither pincheth nor slippeth." — Ibid., 
p. 19. 

A marginal note says, "The ceremony is not approved, but 
the invention declared." 

" Let no one doubt that it would be well for both men and 
women if each sex really knew more of the other; if women 
were less in the habit of wearing a smiling mask in their inter- 
course with men, and men showed more of their natural manly 
selves in the society of women. As it is, there is a sort of hy- 
pocrisy of sex on both sides, which is usually practiced out of 
the family. It is curious to mark how far this goes, and in 
what little things it shows itself. You shall watch a man talking 
with men ; mark how natural his tones are, how easy his atti- 
tude and gestures, if he indulge in any. But see the same man 
go up to a woman and talk with her : in nine cases out of ten , 
you see a sudden and total change of bearing and demeanor. 
His voice has a sort of affectation in it ; his body has acquired 
a sort of ungraceful movement, or is stiffened into a more con- 
strained repose. It is clear that he is acting a part; and a 
similar change is observable in the woman, who has, generally, 
one manner for her own sex, and another for the other. While 
conversing with a man, she is much more alive, and eager, and 
vivacious, and often thinks it necessary to affect an interest in 
things in which she feels no real concern. She is playing to 
the man, as the man is playing to her. They are showing each 
other the varnished side of their respective selves. 

" Now in all social intercourse there is more or less of this sort 
of admitted and conscious deception, but it is much more elabo- 
rate, goes further, and is used more as a blind between persons 
of the opposite sexes ; and it has more serious ill consequences 
as between men and women than as between man and man, or 
woman and woman. It is never so much practiced as when 
people are falling in love with each other, and afterwards, during 
Ibve-making, and the earlier stages of married life; and then, 


all of a sudden, the husband or wife lays aside the mask from 
sheer impatience of it, or it gets knocked off in some sudden 
collision, or it slips aside, and then is the first bitter disappoint- 
ment and disenchantment, on the one side or the other, as the 
case may be. 

" Married people, however, must come to an understanding 
sooner or later, and at more or less cost. With them the decep- 
tion is sure to be found out, though the discovery not unfre- 
quently saddens the future of two lives. But in the common 
give and take of social life, between men and women who are 
not lovers, nor like to be, this habit of mutual deception leads 
to a sort of general falseness, unreality, and contemptible, though 
tolerated, affectation. 

" It belongs to women to say what they think of men, but it 
strikes the writer that he may be pardoned for saying some 
things which he has observed men think of women, in the hope 
that he may hit some real ' blots/ and, perhaps, touch a quick 
conscience or so, and thus help, perhaps, to the correction of a 
bad habit. 

" As a general rule, men like natural, easy-mannered, frank, 
and unaffected women. It is true that some men will tell you 
they 'like affectation.' But inquiry into this will prove that 
they only like an affectation ; some trick, perhaps, or peculiarity, 
which has for them a mysterious attraction, altogether inexpli- 
cable, and which no woman need ever give herself the trouble 
to seek for, in order to employ it. It is not, indeed, uncommon 
for a man to declare he likes affectation, because he happens, 
for the time being, to admire and like an affected woman. But 
the real charm, then, is not in her affectation : ' She's an affected 
woman,' in man's criticism of woman, is blame. So much 
women may be assured of." 

In all this plain, sensible business, of judicious and necessary 
preparation for a long life, there should be no flinching, preva- 
rication, or disguise ; and there never will be any, if the par- 
ties have been properly brought up, and are influenced by pure 
and honorable feelings. 

The primary motive will be honorable marriage, not lust or 
speculation. All bargains upon this momentous subject should 
be open and frank — and no concealment of lineage, education, 
habits, character, connection, and fortune, intentions and pur- 
poses ; everything should be as sincere as when our souls are 
in communion with God. 


There are by nature so many plain and distinct reciprocations, 
in the constitution of the sexes, as to render all useless cere- 
monies between them absurd and ridiculous. 

Before marriage, if the motives are honorable, there is mutual 
confidence, and when their objects are sensual, all forms and 
ceremonies are dispensed with; and they soon understand each 

And why shall not the honorable impulses of a true husband 
and wife in every case be invoked and consulted in advance? 
Why not be frank and candid when the object is honorable, if 
unreserved when it is not so? 

There is as much candor due to virtue as to licentiousness. 

Influenced by honorable intentions for marriage, both men 
and women, with becoming delicacy, may properly seek each 
other's acquaintance; and encourage mutual and social inter- 
changes of genteel and liberal familiarity. 

It subserves the cause of virtue, maintains a correct sense of 
mutual respect, and elevates the tone of society, enables young 
persons to become acquainted with, and to understand each 
other; prevents imprudent marriages, and scandalous and fatal 

Whatever precautions may be recommended by education, 
upon this curious and mysterious subject, its capricious and 
blindfold obstinacy in youth, it is seen, sometimes rejects all the 
cautions employed upon less important affairs. 

And even with age, marvelous eccentricities are sometimes 

Spring and winter, dry old age, and blooming youth, often 
harmonize in wonderful concord. 

This apparent inconsistency, and why so many queer matches 
turn out well, finds its explanation, perhaps, in the great law 
which has so emphatically and mysteriously ordained the sexes 
for each other. 

The hidden instincts, and invincible impulses, which imper- 
ceptibly draw them together, and from which the most ungo- 
vernable animal sympathies and cohesions proceed, admonish 
each man and woman, as maturity is approached, solemnly and 
soberly to resolve upon marriage or celibacy. 

Vanity, rashness, speculation, and passion should have no 

By this period of life, both sexes have sufficient discretion to 
know if there is any obstacle in the way of their marriage. 


If they are deformed, or labor under any chronic or heredi- 
tary complaint, or impurity of lineage, they should calmly and 
resolutely decide to remain unmarried. 

This is a dictate of propriety so obvious that it is scarcely 
necessary to state it ; and yet there is too little regard paid to 
an indiscretion, even with the many dangerous and revolting 
consequences flowing from it. 

No man or woman, of ordinary, much less refined, sensi- 
bility, would be willing to incur the hazard, that a significant 
physical deformity, such as a humpback, a short leg, a club- 
foot, a hare-lip, a deformed or blind eye, an absent or withered 
limb, or a mangy or scalded head, in some unfortunate moment 
of temper or merriment, might not be made the subject of a 
sneer, or a smile of derision, of open or covert insult and scorn, 
and much more, if the other side happened to be in a paroxysm 
of anger. 

It would be absurd for a sensitive and suspicious mind, which 
all cripples, and persons with these imperfections have, to ac- 
cept as security for the peace, under such provoking excitements, 
the supposed or imaginai*y good taste and benevolence of any 
man or woman (even though they be husband or wife) that 
ever lived. 

The risk would be too great against the perilous and terrific 
contingencies of our waggish, irascible, and ungovernable im- 

A deformed man or woman on their own account should never 
marry : nor should marriage be thought of by those who have 
hereditary, chronic, or even transient maladies. 

The consumption of the lungs, and scrofulous complaints, or 
any personal or mental malady, are most offensive and odious; 
and directly descend to, and are inevitably entailed upon, chil- 

Diseases supposed to be temporary are often hereditary. 

If their presence or liability is known to the one who has, 
or may have them, and not known to the other, the conceal- 
ment is a base fraud ; and if they are known to both, the prox- 
imity of the parties is disgusting and unnatural. 

There should be a municipal law, to forbid and prevent these 
infamies, and to make tbem causes of divorce. 

Not less abominable is it for any man or woman to conceal 
from the other their base birth ; that any primogenitor, how- 
ever remote, had been a judicial or moral malefactor; that 



any of them had been a fugitive, with forged name ; had ever 
been guilty, whether convicted or not, of stealing, counterfeit- 
ing, forging, gambling, open prostitution, or any other crime 
mains in se ; of acts criminal in themselves, for which there is 
no excuse ; or had ever been ducked, drummed out of a camp, 
or whipped, branded, cropped, imprisoned, or hanged. 

All of which are just as certain evidence of base blood in a 
man as the sac of poison and the deadly fangs of the rattle- 
snake are proof positive that he is not a harmless worm. 

All such persons do know their previous taints and obli- 
quities by the time they are old enough to think of marriage, 
and then they should firmly resolve to prevent the contagious 
spread of their fatal distempers ; and resolutely shun all tempta- 
tions and excitement for cohabitation in any form. 

By an honorable celibacy, they should suffer their race, for 
general good, to be extinguished; and thus propitiate, per- 
chance, that wrath, by which perhaps, for some awful dissolu- 
tion, they or their ancestors have been spotted with a plague. 

There are parents and children whose sole purpose in this re- 
spect is, at all hazards, to obtain a lawful speculation, and to 
hold their victim to the strict letter of legal liability. 

Men by mean devices have obtained the affections and the 
hands of women, without any motive but money j and when 
that end is obtained, their wives are left to cold neglect and 
brutal desolation. 

So, too, with much more craft than it would be supposed be- 
longed to females, for there are some depraved and wicked 
women. Mothers, aunts, and friends conspire with girls, whose 
moral perversions have been encouraged, who are sordid, cold, 
extravagant, artful, and poor, to inveigle respectable men of 
property, or reliable pursuits. 

Plots are formed to legitimate frauds for marriage, with 
sinister and secret objects. 

Introductions are procured ; the family connections, business, 
and prospects of the gentleman are complimented; they are all 
well known and universally respected ; he is told how richly he 
deserves a virtuous and affectionate wife, who will devote herself 
to his home and happiness as his pious mother has done to his 
good old honored father. 

Cheerful conversations, sweetened by bland and delicate at- 
tentions; accidental and delightful parties of select friends; kind 
and anxious greetings. Looked for him last evening — hope he 


has not been indisposed — so kind to come now — must not do so 

Euphemia was quite worried; confidentially consulted by the 
mother on an important private affair ; affectionate leave-takings; 
must be sure and come soon; kind good-by; sorrowful fare- 
well, and mournful adieu. 

Aunt Betty is delighted with his manners. " Euphemia is a 
'cute little Sibyl; she was sure you would come this morning; 
would not go out; excused herself to three calls; sent back 
regrets to invitations ; remained at home on purpose for you ; 
(and, in a whisper,) the dear innocent creature is not a bit proud, 
although she is as rich as a Jewess. 

" She is the best housekeeper in the world, too, and as artless 
as a dove ; just you see how she has marked, and mangled, and 
perfumed a white French linen handkerchief for you. Come, 
now, go into the parlor; she is all alone there, sorting cotton. 
Take her by surprise. Excuse me, if you please, just five 
minutes" (purposely enlarged to the whole morning). 

Fancy and vanity flattered; person, manners, dress, and taste 
admired, and passions inflamed. 

Next day, the sly finger punch and bashful grinning squirm 
of Aunt Betsy with, " Now, Mr. Crawler, I almost hate you 
for poaching off with our poor Euphemia so ; there, stop now ; 
what do I mean, did you say ? You had better now " 

So, taking his arm with one hand, and putting her other hand 
on his mouth, to keep him from speaking, she leads him to the 
innocent Euphemia, and says to him, " Oh, you artful man !" 
and vanishes. 

The mother soon glides in with all possible grace and ease, 
asks Euphemia to bring her gold thimble from the work-stand 
up stairs, kind a pouts, and nervously exclaims, that she " did 
not think they would have served her so." 

"And she, too, the sly minx, so young! Who would have 
thought it? But never mind now; don't say a word — mind, 
you must be right good, Mr. Crawler, and I'll see " 

"Why, madam, I mean no " 

"There, stop — you intended to say, of course, that you 
meant nothing. Oh, you sly fox 

"Here, my darling daughter, give me the thimble;" and 
quizzically nodding and significantly shaking her finger, balloons 
herself from the dear couple with a playful "Now be good 
children," and a kind of serious "Good-by; God bless you!" 


There is no time or chance to explain or to disavow. Eu- 
phemia wipes her eyes — goes to the window. The least Mr. 
Crawler can do is to ask, softly and kindly, what disturbs her. 
Hopes he has not been the cause of her distress and embar- 

"Oh no." She "has no one but him to confide with. 
Mother and aunt have found it all out. She denied it — said 
they were not engaged — that he had asked her no such ques- 
tion. But aunt said that was nonsense — that she pretended 
to be mighty ignorant, just as if it must be an indenture under 

"When," she said, " she screamed out <Ma, what does aunt 
mean? She frightens me; am I ruined?' And ma said, 'No, 
my dear, you are not ruined. I am half angry with you, though. 
Of course he is a gentleman of too much honor to cross-examine 
you like a squire, but, like a true lover, he mentally offers his 
delicate proposals for mar-mar-marri-age.' 

"And then ma said, 'Euphemia, my love, you silently ac- 
cepted his proposals by a blushing consent; and then," she said, 
" she burst into a flood of tears, and cried out, just as" she 
"now did, and told ma and aunt they had cheated and snared 
her, and drawn her into a trap, so they had — and she would tell 
Mr. Crawler, the first time he came, and get him to take her 
part, for they were all against her." 

Mr. Crawler then, of course, holds out his arms, into which 
the afflicted and broken-hearted dear child finds refuge from 
her angry mother. 

They sob away their sorrow, in reciprocal sympathies, mes- 
meric ecstasies, impatient hopes, dreams of gilded bliss, speedy 
nuptials, and glowing raptures. 

Then come the crowning joys, of nuptial banquets, costly 
outfits, splendid wardrobe, house, equipage, sumptuous enter- 
tainments, and the whirl of rapturous transports. 

The moon of love is soon eclipsed by satiate time ; the hour 
for thought steps in ; the lawful, wedded wife is queen, and 
holds her sceptre with a sterner brow. 

She has no paltry pelf; her aunt, in parables had spoken, 
"rich as a Jewess;" Rachel, the Jewess, had no golden tan- 
kard, but held her crystal water in an earthen jar, a drink 
from which did charm for life her willing lord. 

" No murmurs now, my love," cries the sweet Euphemia to 
her beloved Crawler. " Hist, dear, lest generous friends and 
guests should -hear and gossip of our discord." 


" You must obey, my love ; hush, be still ; it is ungenteel 
to scold. Are you a man ? — or why, so proud, embark upon 
the sea of life V Alas, content is banished ! 

The ruling propensity with young men and women is rather 
to avoid than encourage the intimacy of their equals; between 
whom deceptions cannot be practiced, nor light or familiar 
liberties be taken or allowed with impunity. 

They incline to intercourse with those whose education, 
habits, and condition are below them ; perhaps this proceeds 
from the assurance and license taken by one, and the compla- 
cency allowed by the other. The vanity and private feelings 
of both are thus secretly accommodated. 

An uneducated and destitute young woman, of course, is 
pleased and excited by the attentions of a rich and educated 
young man of genteel associations ; her utmost efforts are em- 
ployed to charm and win his affections, in which she is sure to 
be joined by her family : he is admired and flattered, and all 
her faults are concealed ; his ardor and her simplicity soon 
lead to mutual excitements, in which he loses his reason, his 
judgment, and caution, and seldom fails to make the blunder 
of soiling her character and his own, or getting coaxed or bul- 
lied into an unequal and ruinous marriage. 

So, too, with young women. Between them and young men 
of equal rank, there is a slender chance for romance or per- 
sonal familiarities, however keen their secret propensities. 
They know each other too well, are more narrowly watched. 
They are afraid of, and respect each other. They have every 
apprehension of injured character to dread by acts of indiscre- 
tion. Seductions but seldom occur with young persons in the 
same sphere of life. But when the sensual eye of a low-bred 
man falls upon a woman above him, and she listens to his art- 
ful flattery, and his cunning concessions of her superiority, her 
discretion is beguiled by her thoughtless love of admiration. 

If he sanctifies his devotion by proposals of marriage, the 
idol of a woman's soul, he will not fail to win her. Transpose 
the sexes and their conditions, and the result is obvious. 

By these impregnable and impelling cross and counter sensa- 
tions, the sexes, at this ripe and impulsive season of life, are 
most mysteriously entrapped, and led away too often, whether 
married or not married, to their utter ruin. 

This wholesome lesson of human precipitancy teaches how 


essential to peace, security, and character it is to maintain a 
rigid control over the irritating excitement of impulse and pas- 
sion, to avoid the influence of eccentricities, and that which we 
do not fully understand, and to be content with that which 
satisfies the judgment and is approved by the conscience. 

All young persons are prone to make hasty and precipitate 
marriages, under the influence of passion and excitement, with- 
out consideration or reflection. They are giddy, eccentric, and 
childish, and impetuously rush into the most pernicious inti- 

These are more frequently dropped with men after marriage 
than with women. 

If such women do not marry, they are apt to lose sight of 
moral restraints, and, when married, they too often encumber 
their husbands with their former associates, who, if poor or 
lazy (accomplishments which generally go together), loaf and 
feed on them for life. 

They never fail to fasten on them all their relations. These 
luxuries they must endure, however repugnant to their pockets 
and their peace; and millions of husbands have had their 
purses eased, and their habitations secretly subverted into feed- 
stalls for mendicants, or almshouses for sturdy paupers. 

If they flunk or rebel against these sympathetic accommoda- 
tions, wrangles, abuse, and persecutions follow ; and separations 
more frequently come from these causes than is supposed. 

These remarks are intended to apply exclusively to the 
motives and impulses referred to, and not to parties who are 
intelligent and respectable, and who are influenced by mutual 
feelings of respect and attachment, and who are governed both 
before and after marriage by prudence, caution, and discretion. 

It is essential that certain fundamental facts and primary 
elements should be kept in view, in order to obviate the em- 
barrassment into which we must inevitably fall by omitting to 
keep them at all times in their proper place, and thereby com- 
mit the error of putting woman in a false position, and expect- 
ing too much from her, and feeling impatient because she does 
not meet expectations which we have no right to raise. 

For example, the order of primary events must be remem- 
bered, that at the beginning, and before man was made, " a 
garden/' that is, the world, " was made;" and then it was sug- 
gested to the Divine conception that "there was not a man to 


till the ground" Man was then made after God's image, per- 
haps as to figure and form, and certainly, as this expression 
necessarily implies, with mind, intellect, and mental powers in 
some degree fashioned and modeled after the nature and cha- 
racter of the Creator; that, face to face, God conversed and 
communed with, and explained to him his power and authority, 
and brought all things to him to be examined and named. 

These sublime preliminaries manifest the wonderful light and 
knowledge conferred on man at the beginning. 

Still there was an additional thought which occurred to the 
Creator; there was "not found an help meet for man." Wo- 
man was then made, and " brought to the man," and they were 
told that " she was Jiis help meet," and that " he should rule over 
her;" and thus they were left together. 

This plain simple narrative obviously shows that the faculties 
of woman were all designed to be secondary and subservient to 

_ It does not appear that she was created with the mental capa- 
cities he had, or that she was instructed as he had been. 

She was instantly ushered out of the secret chambers of 
Heaven, from unconscious creation, into the immediate presence 
of man. 

The first sensations of her existence were excited into action 
by the sympathetic transports of their first mutual surprise and 

She therefore had not been imbued with the inherent mental 
capacities, nor had she received from her Maker the knowledge 
which man had received. 

This information was left for him to explain to her, and he 
was made responsible for the performance of this duty. 

He was required to be kind and patient, and to forbear with 
her deficiencies of mind, and her ignorance of the vast and 
wonderful stores of knowledge which had been bestowed on 
him j carefully to explain them to her tender and infant under- 
standing, and to remember that it did not appear that it was 
intended that she should know or appreciate them as he does. 

Perhaps it is not going too far to say that the design of her 

creation did not involve the occasions for the high conceptions 

and vast responsibilities conferred on man. 

He was placed over all things, including her. 

He was required to rule and govern, she to obey; and this 

power to rule, by one, and duty for obedience by the other, 


before the fall, was so intensely blended with their moral and 
physical identity, that his power, and her duty, were both ab- 
sorbed in a rhapsody of pure and angelic ecstasy. 

So that, after the awful wreck of their first and glorious rap- 
tures, nothing was left but a mournful conflict between the con- 
scious impurity of barren power on one side and selfish rebellion 
on the other side. Their eyes were now opened to each other's 
depravities, and no fig-leaf could hide their degenerate pro- 

Nothing but perfect affinities and the most rigid self-circum- 
spection could save them from perpetual wrangle and strife. 

Their souls possessed no more heavenly concurrences ; there 
were no absorbing attractions and inherent sympathies with the 
man, no more yielding confidence by the woman. 

Both are now perpetually tortured with doubts, suspicions, 
jealousies, resentment, and selfishness. 

They are thrown upon the weak, wicked, impure, and perverse 
resources of their degenerate, depraved, and wicked hearts. 

But little of their primitive purity is left, and their nuptial 
felicities now depend, alas, too much upon the dread of public 
opinion, the urgencies of sensual impulse, and their sinister 
occasions for selfish accommodation. 

The result of these just conceptions will warn man and 
woman both, that, however appropriate and beautiful the first 
dispensation was for their happiness, there came over the 
spirit of their glorious and heavenly dream an awful cloud, in 
which-they were wakened up to horrors unutterable; and that 
a demon banished from their rapturous souls the heavenly joys 
of involuntary and harmonious love ; that they are now doomed 
to the undying tortures of mutual distrust: that both are con- 
scious that the golden sceptre of man's absorbing, entrancing 
power, and the silken cords of her rapturous obedience, are 
forever broken ; and that, however the codes of reason and con- 
science may ordain the primitive rules of government, every 
man knows he can no longer enforce this power, and that wo- 
man feels that its exercise is as arbitrary as it is absurd. 

For the breach of all contracts, except in the private reci- 
procations of marriage, there is a legal remedy; in this, there 
is no redress, but with the conscience. 

They very well understand their respective duties; that there 
can be no harmony without the voluntary performance of these 
duties; that there is no power by either to enforce their per- 


fonnance; and that the only remedy is a voluntary self-control, 
and self-surrender of their entire and several efforts for mutual 
kindness and harmony. 

They hold each other hy the throat, for life or death, without 
escape, and here their fearful destiny must rest. 

Terrible must be the doom of the cowardly and fiendish hus- 
band or wife who plays the tyrant or the cheat. 

The torments of undying remorse must ultimately be their 
just and certain doom. 

The mental and moral feelings should correspond or be capable 
of assimilation. 

^ Persons of different ages, nations, and prejudices, however 
distinct, may readily accommodate themselves to each other, if 
there is mutual affection. 

Youth and ignorance will conform to maturity and education. 

These are not radical obstacles in the way of conjugal har- 
mony; and indeed there would seem to be very few to it, where 
there are sincere feelings of reciprocal regard. 

Efforts for conformity on one side, and concession on the other, 
will most wonderfully blend the feelings, assimilate the dispo- 
sitions, and harmonize the tempers. 

These considerations, however, must be referred exclusively 
to the mental and moral condition of the parties; their indi- 
vidual and social feeliDgs, which result from their domestic 
education, and which lie at the foundation of the pride and 
independence of men sometimes, and certainly with every woman 
of delicacy and spirit, render it essential, if they are persons of 
this description, for the security of their future peace and mutual 
happiness, that in these respects they should start even, or that 
they should not begin with an absolute state of dependence on 
either side. No gentleman, no well-bred, high-minded man, 
will feed and subsist in idleness and poverty upon the means 
of his wife; no one but a driveling poltroon would do this; 
and no lady of true spirit, no woman with genuine feelings of 
female dignity, will cast herself with pauperism upon her hus- 
band, on purpose to be maintained by him; none but the mean 
and sordid can do this. 

If they are both poor, and agree to work, and start life to- 
gether, they are then upon the same footing, and the dependence 
upon each other is equal and mutual, and there is no humiliat- 


ing drawback— both in their respective spheres contributing to 
the common stock of conjugal accommodation. 

However the heat of passion, and the ardor and inexperience 
of youth may at first produce a fusion of all other feelings ; 
after this excitement has subsided, and the judgment is suffered 
to assume its dominion, both will discover that their individual 
wants are more urgent than their animal indulgences; that 
there is a wide range of sober, responsible, and laborious duties 
for each patiently and constantly to perform, to. secure their 
mutual happiness. 

When this crisis comes, if they are in heart refined and ho- 
norable, unless they can both see and feel that they are re- 
spectively and equally performing these duties, the roots of dis- 
satisfaction will shoot out into the secret recesses of the heart. 
This crushing consciousness of dependence on, and injustice 
to, a husband or a wife will be exclusively personal. It cannot 
be disclosed to, nor is it susceptible of sympathy from the other. 
And just so far as it can be seen and felt that by labor, care, 
and service there is contribution made to the common stock, can 
there be consistent and free indulgence in any extra personal 
gratification ; one dollar beyond this mark will be regarded as 
an exaction, at which there will be a sense of secret mortifica- 
tion, if not shame, by the user. 

Hence it is that poor women, of intellect and high senti- 
ments of honor, who marry men of fortune, or whose profes- 
sional or other employments enable them to live in affluence, lead 
lives of scrupulous industry and rigid economy ; in no instance 
touching a luxury for their personal convenience, unless from 
the generous contributions of their husbands. These instances 
of discreet and consistent self-denial are sometimes attributed 
to a preference for retirement. Woman is naturally gay, and 
delights in the charms of refined and cheerful society. The ex- 
planation of these numerous instances of solitude, secret toil, and 
nervous dependence is found in the fiscal inequalities referred to. 

The same law applies with equal force to the husband. If 
he has the dignity of a man, he will counterbalance the domestic 
advantages of his wife's revenues over the deficiencies of his 
exchequer, by vigilant emulation in some honorable occupation. 
And if either disregards this obvious rule of reason and delicacy, 
they have no right to expect the free and hearty reciprocations 
of a full and generous heart. There will be secret withhold- 
ings of respect and affection on one side, and a consciousness 


of imposition on the other side; and it is as unnatural as it is 
unreasonable to suffer unfairness, or require inequalities with 
impunity, even between husband and wife. They have their 
separate and individual notions of personal justice, as much as 
if they were single ; and there is no reason why they should 
not have them as strongly after, as before marriage. 

Neither has a right to expect the other to surrender their 
separate personal rights. They are married, not to merge, the 
rights of one with those of the other : the law that the legal 
existence of the wife is merged in her husband is intended for 
her advantage and protection ; but marriage is designed for the 
mutual contributions of their sexual attributes, to maintain and 
increase the inviolable security and strength of both ; not that 
the wife shall lose a jot of her feminine character, but that it 
is to be honorably ratified, and publicly sustained by the manly 
firmness of her husband ; in which he obtains an elevated rank, 
as the joint representative of conservative and moral responsi- 

So that the joint and separate dignity and beauty of their 
characters essentially depend upon a reciprocal spirit of conces- 
sion and contribution to the elements of their several claims to 
individual merit and distinction. Both should therefore be on 
timely guard, to shun this rock of ruin to their future peace ; 
and, in the midst of their young and ardent love, remember 
that anon they too will be painstaking, domestic drudges of 
home and children, as are their parents, and the other care-worn 
and anxious married folks they see around them. 

Let them be careful to avoid these premature and blind ex- 
citements, and before their impulses are too strong, for then it 
may be too late; carefully and calmly consider that which, if 
now neglected, must be solemnly, and perhaps fatally, reflected 
upon hereafter. 

Let them ponder upon this awful step taken for time, perhaps 
for eternity; privately consult some honorable, pure, and aged 
friend, whose calm, intelligent, and careful experience will 
enable him to penetrate not only the secret character, but the 
worldly condition of the person in view ; and unless these car- 
dinal considerations are found with a true and safe state of 
equality of condition and circumstances, modestly avoid, and 
honorably decline the proposal, however flattering and alluring 
it may be. 

Wait for an offer that shall secure the moral advantages of a 


good heart, with the opportunity to begin and pass down the 
stream of life, on equal terms of proud and independent part- 
nership, and even destiny; and when the hot sun and the dark 
night of old-fashioned matrimony are spread upon their path, 
if fruits and flowers fall plenteously around, both will feel that 
for them both these blessings have generously come : no timid 
caution then will check the heart; but free and mutual joys 
will glow in bright and lasting sunshine. 

Whatever good or ill comes, it is the weal and woe, the mirth 
and gladness of their common lot ; but start not uneven, and 
unfairly yoked ; let not one have all the stock and power for ne- 
cessary thrift and feed. Trust not the weak and sinister heart 
of man or woman to light the unequal burthen with sweet and 
constant love; rather fear its sel6sh look or word, to chill the 
soul with slur or twit of bounty. Set forth with empty hands, 
and go together equal, free, and poor, for mutual chance and 
gains ; or stay alone in peace and single harmless honor, rather 
than mar another's joy, or blur thy destiny with fashionable 
pauperism and sordid ease. 

There is nothing special or peculiar in these views as to 

They have their origin, and spring from an element that is 
blended with the relative character of every created thing, and 
eminently display the wonderful and various attributes of the 

The judgment and sense of self-respect may both lie dor- 
mant, until maturity and experience have called them into action, 
or while they are, with all the other mental and animal faculties, 
under the dominion of sexual excitement, and thus leave us to 
pursue hoodwinked the involuntary irritations of our animal 
propensities; but when the keen edge of appetite is blunted, 
and reason assumes its sway, however strong has been the de- 
lusion, the mind wakens up to reflection and truth; the rational 
and necessary laws by which the moral rank and social rela- 
tions of society are governed soon address themselves to the 
understanding, the reckless disregard of which is now followed 
by a keen and sensitive desire to take an honorable position in 
life, and a repugnance to that which hangs about us tending to 
prevent our wishes. 

Thousands of both sexes at the age of two or three and twenty, 
or after the dream of passion is over, and the urgent and press- 
ing occasions for the countenance of society are felt and appre- 


elated, have looked about them witb amazement and remorse; 
the most involuntary reactions upon the heart are then produced. 
The calm and consistent aspirations of every one anxiously 
aim at the attainment of an honorable and appropriate estima- 
tion by society, however poor and humble; and to be deprived 
of this secret consolation by our own follies is a source of con- 
stant and crushing affliction. 

Too much care and caution, therefore, cannot be employed to 
avert these contingent calamities. 

The incitements of passion and the impetuosities of youth 
disdain all criterions of condition and character, except those 
which please the eye and warm up the passions ; when these 
transient exuberances are sated, it is discovered, perhaps too late, 
that there are moral or conventional incidents blended with this 
new made congress of destinies upon which the world looks with 
aversion, and for which we now have a repugnance that cannot 
be overcome. 

In this connection, there is a startling calamity recorded of 
the total destruction of the domestic peace of a gentleman of 
pure lineage, who was inveigled into a marriage at an early age 
by female management. 

The parents of the wife had come from a distance; their ap- 
pearance was favorable; but nothing was known of their con- 
nections or lineage. 

The husband soon discovered that his wife's family had but 
small pretensions to respectability. 

In about three years after his marriage, one of his wife's 
cousins, a young man, was convicted of a capital crime, and sen- 
tenced to be hanged. 

The husband shook himself loose from this his degraded con- 
nection, but the wife held him for her support, which was the 
primary motive of her lawful wedded vow. 

If the disparity is in years, fortune, position, mind, or educa- 
tion, the effect is the same. There can be no natural affinity 
between youth and age. There may be affection and solicitude 
by one, and respect and reverence by the other, but there is no 
impelling or exciting attraction, no glowing love or mental co- 
hesion, because this is unnatural. 

There may be with the rich towards the poor charity and 
compassion, and by the poor for the rich, thankfulness and 
gratitude ; but there is no instinctive, mutual sympathy, no sin- 
cere or reciprocal kindness and cordiality. 



The feeling is thoughtful and selfish with the first, and with 
the latter it is doubt and uncertainty. With those who have 
the advantage of mind, education, and position, the feeling to- 
wards those beneath them is of superiority and not equality, 
the compromise of which with the inferior is secretly felt to be 
condescension, and against which there is a hidden and involun- 
tary emotion of jealousy, envy, and aversion. 

In all these opposite relations, whether mental, moral, con- 
ventional, or pecuniary, the innate sensation, the secret impulse 
of the heart, with all men, however refined by education, or pu- 
rified by religion, is not for affinity but disaffinity, not attrac- 
tion but distraction, not for union but for disunion, not for 
concord but for discord, not to come to and remain together, 
but to keep asunder and fall from each other. 

This great law of inherent uncongeniality, instinctive re- 
pulsion, and selfish individuality, is palpable, universal, and un- 

It is demonstrated by all the works of creation, from the first 
cause of all things down to the humblest objects of existence: 
the towering oak and the stunted bush, the eagle and the spar- 
row, the wolf and the lamb, the prince and the beggar, the 
judge and the culprit, the master and the slave ; between know- 
ledge and ignorance, strength and weakness, the godlike infinity 
of intellect, and the crushing infirmity of the fool. 

The legal philosophy of marriage is very well expressed by 
Judge Lewis, in 10 Penn. State Reports, page 353. He says 
as follows : " Marriage is a wise regulation, in harmony with 
nature and religion, and is the only efficient preventive of li- 
centiousness; the happiness of the parties and the interests of 
society require that it should be free from either coercion or 

" Marriage is the appropriate regulation of that great instinct 
of nature which was designed by the Creator to. replenish the 

"It is upon this authorized union that all civilized nations 
depend for their prosperity in peace and their defence in war. 

"The principle of reproduction stands next in importance to 
its elder correlative self-preservation, and is equally a funda- 
mental law of existence. 

"It is the blessing which tempered with mercy the justice 
of expulsion from Paradise. 

"It was impressed upon the human creation by a beneficent 


Providence to multiply the images of himself, and thus to pro- 
mote his own glory and the happiness of his creatures. 

"Not man alone, but the whole animal and vegetable king- 
dom are under an imperious necessity to obey its mandates. 

" From the lord of the forest to the monster of the deep; from 
the subtil ty of the serpent to the innocence of the dove; from 
the celestial embrace of the mountain kalmia to the descending 
fructifications of the lily of the plain ; all nature bows submis- 
sively to this primeval law. 

" Even the flowers which perfume the air with their fragrance, 
and decorate the forest and field with their hues, are but ' cur- 
tains to the nuptial bed.' 

" The principles of morality, the policy of nations, the doc- 
trines of the common law, the law of nature, and the law of 
God, unite in condemning as void all obstructions to its free 



He who fails in one thing fails in all — Magnitude and insignificance of the 
act do not change this rule — All sin alike, except as to example — Con- 
tract of marriage — No law of GOD or man can keep it inviolate if there 

is dislike Its security depends on the homogeneal character of the sexes 

— Pride, and fear of public opinion sometimes keep them together — If 
woman superior to man, his self-pride is affected — Not so vice versd — 
Don't know each other till after married — They should mutually forbear 
— Respect — And not contradict — Great change — Hard work — Plain do- 
mestic life, care, &c. — Should be no exercise of authority, but mutual 
concession — If disaffinities are irreconcilable, should part — For either 
to hold the other by force is brutal — No advantage should be allowed by 
either — Infidelity in love. 

He who faileth in one commandment, it is said, is as guilty 
as he who violates the whole law. 

However this rule may not comport with man's tariff of re- 
tributions, it is clear that the moral or the pecuniary insigni- 
ficance or magnitude of contracts does not increase or diminish 
the strength of the reason for or against their violations. 

Strong inducements are offered, and severe punishments im- 
posed for the inviolability of important duties, such as capital 
punishment for certain crimes, and the incorporation of the act 
of marriage with the ordinances of the church. 

But it is difficult to define how one breach of faith is more 
inexcusable than another, except by its example and conse- 

A man in his own heart, at the bar of his own conscience, if 
he has one, can find no better excuse for the wanton and deli- 
berate failure to pay a debt of one dollar than one thousand 
dollars — to forge a check for ten dollars than ten thousand dol- 
lars — to desert his master before his apprenticeship is up, or 
his child while helpless, than to break the contract and condi- 
tion for allegiance with which he took life, or to repudiate 


So far as the heart of the delinquent is concerned, all sin is 
the same; married persons are on the same footing with their 
nuptial contract as they are with any other contract, and in no 
respect are they differently placed. 

There is no religious sanction, no terror from public opinion 
or legal punishment that has any real secret influence; if they 
are dissatisfied, they may be influenced by pride, cupidity, or 
cowardice ; their vanity, self-interest, and fear may induce them 
to bend their necks ; but if, in their hearts, there is secret dis- 
like, they will detest the yoke. 

Perhaps there are instances in which concurring wants and 
mutual apathies allow neutrality of sentiment between them. In 
all such cases, if temper is controlled and true interest is con- 
sulted, harmony must follow. 

This must be seldom; for rational beings are governed, in 
some measure, by sentiment, not wholly by instinct; so that it 
is a question of will, not duty — of fact, not right. 

They do, or they do not love ; they do, or they do not hate 
each other ; or one loves, and the other hates. 

Mere indifference is so rare as to almost make it an excep- 
tion to the rule, that in marriage there is love or hatred ; that 
is, that there is no medium between these two extremes; the 
tie is too close, the conjunctions of mental and physical affini- 
ties too exact and distinct to rest in harmony without concur- 
rent sensibilities, and against discordant preferences, however 
unintelligible or inexplicable this fact may be. 

There is, therefore, no sense of duty, or dread of punishment, 
that can create love or mutual assimilation; these are impulses 
of the heart, governed exclusively by the natural taste or the 
choice ; and in this we are not answerable ; for they are invo- 
luntary, however capricious they may appear to others. 

So that, if it was not for the mysterious homogeneal charac- 
ter of the sexes, there would be but limited marital faith ; and 
to this axiom, in physical and mental physiology, must be as- 
signed the marvelous simulations of married life ; for religion, 
law, and duty give them no secret help, when there is a settled 
dislike or natural aversion from any cause. 

Pride, and the fear of public opinion, keep thousands toge- 
ther. The repugnance, whether mutual, or with one, is soon 
discovered ; they cannot disguise aversion : if it is with both, 
self-interest avoids and prevents violence from either; if it is 
by the wife, and the husband loves her, his agony is unuttera- 


ble; and it is almost a certain prefix to despair. If it be he, 
and she loves him, her bouI withers speedily away; but if she 
loves him not, and is artful, he will writhe under the most un- 
sparing and remorseless persecution. 

It requires a large stock of courage to induce separation ; the 
parties will submit to severe discomforts rather than brook the 
horrors of an open rupture. 

It is a perplexing question, which suffers most; whether they 
discover that their marriage has been had in treachery, for lust 
or gain, or their nuptial intimacy discloses latent and concealed 
delinquencies, the result to both is terrible. Aversion must 
follow; delicacy may revolt at literal explanations; coolness is 
rebuked and charged with fraud or infidelity, followed up by 
secret persecutions and threats of prosecutions by the law. 

Few men have sufficient courage to brave the sneers of an 
unjust and ungenerous world, who take much delight to them- 
selves in a gossip gratis for injured wives and faithless hus- 

To the wife the calamity is not so severe; she is spared the 
severities of popular odium, which always falls upon the hus- 
band's head, even though she is wholly in the wrong. 

When, from any cause, these lamentable disasters occur, the 
parties owe to each other a solemn duty for quiet and absolute 

The refusal by either of this obvious act of natural justice is 
malignant treachery. 

By this means they may have a chance for future usefulness; 
time and new relations in life, as if one had died, wear away 
past recollections; but, without release, their days must pass in 
secret sorrow and public disgrace. 

If there is reeiprocal confidence with man and wife in each 
other's constancy, still there may not be a mutual reliance in 
their respective discretion and judgment as to other matters, 
although there is mutual love. 

The old and the young, the ignorant and the wise, the strong 
and the weak intellect, may hold most warm, ardent, and mutual 
attachments ; but these mental differences necessarily place one 
above the other. 

If the superiority is with the woman, the inherent desire with 
man for "ride" is nettled, even if the sound good sense of the 
wife most carefully eschews every possible occasion of excite- 


There is no power can overcome this natural element of his 
nature; his self-pride is mortified, and he unconsciously and in- 
voluntarily becomes unhappy ; however warmed and caressed by 
her kindness and love, and however high the power she holds 
over his heart, it will not triumph against this natural instinct 
of his nature. 

She had at the beginning greater influence with him than the 
king of all art, who did not dare to tempt man; while she did 
eat the fruit; and although man was then perfect, she beguiled 
him to violate the only limitation put upon his will. 

A woman, therefore, always suffers in this respect, under the 
most favorable circumstances, by a marriage with a man beneath 
her; besides the risk of his fret, from envy, bad breeding, or 
vulgar origin, being turned to rude and brutal hate. 

If the superiority is with the husband, and there is warm 
reciprocal love, her willing submission to his "rule over her" 
creates the highest imaginable complacency with her. 

Sweet and holy woman sometimes mars this brilliant picture; 
when she is selfish, sinister, and proud, she, too, ensnares for 
speculation, not love, not faith, but revolt. 

Before marriage the parties have slender opportunities to 
discover each other's faults. 

Courtship is often commenced without much previous acquaint- 
ance ; delicacy, it is supposed, forbids familiar personal inquiries 
and explanations, and both maintain the best appearances; in- 
quiries usual upon subjects of business are held as violations of 
good taste; the parties, without much information or suitable 
reflection, mutually rely upon each other's truth, hope for the 
best, and for better and for worse precipitate themselves into 

Afterwards the sober judgment is wakened up. 

Now comes the test of affection : if the attachment is sin- 
cere and mutual, discrepancies of age, health, nation, morals, 
or complexion will not break the charm. 

If one only has this unction, by soft forbearance and ten- 
derness, the other must yield, unless there is some great re- 

If there be no love with either, and their hearts are not 
astray, the concurring rcciprocalities of their common wants 
and impulses in almost every instance will make them mutu- 
ally useful, and perhaps contented. Great allowances should 
be cheerfully conceded by both. 



There should now be an absolute and mutual surrender to 
the dictates of duty, and a resolute renunciation by both of all 
sinister, selfish, or sordid thoughts. 

When courtship begins, there is an implied understanding 
that the parties will be governed in their intercourse by the 
laws of good breeding ; and if either should detect in the other 
a moral or physical defect too delicate too name, this would 
authorize either party to withdraw without explanation ; the 
same rule should apply after marriage. 

A disagreeable, repugnant, or revolting explanation should 
not be asked for before marriage, or looked for or accepted after 

There is an immense range of thoughts and impulses be- 
tween them, which cannot properly and without serious embar- 
rassments be made the subject of free and familiar conversa- 
tion ; in all which implicit dependence for sincerity (however 
inexplicable the unexplained thing may be) must be mutually 

If this were not so, the chaste and beautiful relation of love 
would be degraded by gross impurities. 

Nothing would be left for the bright conceptions of virtuous 
and honorable thought. 

These chaste and harmless secrets belong perhaps exclusively 
to the timid lover. 

Nor should either insist upon urging themselves or their 
tender attachments on the other, when an aversion is discovered 
before or after marriage. 

If the conduct of the retiring party is respectful, the infer- 
ence is that there is some good cause ; and the other is bound 
upon every principle of reciprocity so to presume. 

In the common intercourse of life, no one with true spirit 
will obtrude himself upon a mere friend against his will; and 
to expect a reason for a refusal to a proposed intimacy is im- 
pertinent and rude. 

Acquaintance should not be desired, except for some good 
qualities, which we thus concede, and are therefore bound to 
believe there is good reason for the waiver, and to respect the 
motives of the person declining our acquaintance. 

There may be some objection to us on account of character, 
behavior, or person, which we do not see, and may be repug- 
nant to others ; and to tell us of which would be in bad taste. 


This obvious rule of justice and propriety applies with much 
greater force after than before marriage. 

Married persons have no right to doubt or cpiestion the purity 
of each other's intentions. 

It is rash and unkind for parents and children, brothers and 
sisters, friends, partners, or those under any ties of relation- 
ship or of reciprocal intimacies to impugn each other's motives. 

And the instant that this feeling is indulged in by acts of 
suspicion and language of reproach, the insult is too keen to be 
endured ; it soon banishes regard, and plants in its place bitter- 
ness and dislike. 

With husband and wife it for ever closes the door against 

The parties, now having their eyes open, should be frank to 
themselves and to each other. They should wholly avoid and 
disregard what others say or think. It is their own exclusive 
private affair, in which parents and others have no right to in- 

If there is only an involuntary aversion, without any definite 
dislike; an insubordination of temper or impatience — these 
should be overlooked, and mutually subdued and suppressed ; 
they will pass off; the condition is new, perhaps perplexing 
alike to both. 

Instances often occur of separations and divorces, under these 
excitements, by parties who afterwards unite and re-marry. 
Time and patience may show that they are essential to each 
other's happiness. 

The wife may have unexpected and arduous cares, apprehen- 
sions, and duties, which she should be permitted to try fairly, 
and the husband should accommodate her. 

The husband may labor under the same embarrassments ; 
they should make mutual allowances, and be affectionate, kind, 
and forbearing, and, with all frankness and childlike simplicity, 
encourage an unlimited confidence in, and respect for each 

A large amount of the affairs of domestic life are plain, 
homespun matters of hard work. It is a great and severe 
change for both. They are now not to live on love, but on a 
joint stock co-partnership of labor and self-denial ; what they 
forego for this union of their fortunes, they may gain tenfold 
for, in the felicities of home and happiness. 

There should be no attempts at ascendency or control, no 


pretensions of superiority or affectations of authority ; all such 
impulses should be promptly and secretly suppressed. On the 
contrary, a genuine spirit of kindness and concession should be 
resolutely adhered to and cherished ; wishes, requests, and opin- 
ions should be complied with and concurred in ; complaints 
sympathized with, and expectations fulfilled. When the wife 
asks for a new bonnet, she should have it at once, be praised for 
her economy in waiting so long for it, and admired when 
it is got, for her excellent choice ; or the husband may be re- 
minded of the annoyance he gives her, when without notice he 
brings home two or three strangers to dinner. 

The wife should never permit a half-cooked or spoiled dish 
to come to her table, nor oblige her husband to wait too long 
for, or go without his meals, or any other personal accommoda- 

Whether he be a peasant or a peer, it is her duty to attend 
to all these things personally, if she has her health, just as 
much as it his duty, without grudging, to supply her with a 
full larder. She should not excuse or screen her servants or her 
children; it is his right to judge of the most minute matters of 
his family, and it is wrong to deny him this privilege ; and she 
should disdain to cow him by imputations of cotting. There 
should be no disguise, distrust, or suspicion, but they should 
open with unreserved confidence the entire secrets, emotions, 
and impulses of their inmost hearts and souls to each other ; 
nothing should be kept back, and reserved for themselves, or 
any one else; they have no right to accept or keep the secret 
of another. And nothing but green-eyed jealousy, and hor- 
rid, dark, and damniug suspicions ever came from the slightest 
departure from this essential law of conjugal faith. 

There are very many embarrassments coming in suddenly 
after marriage; they require time and reflection to reconcile the 
temper and pride to the sober realities of home. 

Time, self-control, and an honest and sincere spirit of kind- 
ness and accommodation, will subdue uneasiness, overcome 
doubts, calm apprehensions, and soothe and charm the most 
intractable tempers. 

In this way, discrepancies in manners, habits, education, and 
age are supervened; use soon becomes second nature; and where 
there is no previous or lurking predilections for others, and the 
heart is free, sincere, and open, they will soon find delight in 


each other's society, and really experience the belief that they 
are essential to each other's existence. 

This is no vision, no sketch of the imagination. Millions 
enjoy this rich and heavenly rapture, and nature seems to have 
ordained and contrived these springs of mutual comfort and joy 
with such mysterious refinement, that no alloy, no compromise, 
nothing sinister can be blended or fused into its celestial purity. 

If, however, after a fair trial, there are found to be an insur- 
mountable restlessness and an inveterate disrelish, by one or 
both, even though they are utterly unable to account for, or 
explain it, the fruitless effort for cohabitation should be aban- 
doned. They are not bound to force and torture themselves 
against involuntary repugnances, however capricious. They 
may be the victims of intolerably dark and hidden unconge- 
nialities; there is no vassalage so rude and brutal. 

The serf is fed and sheltered by his lord; but the betrayed 
and deserted husband is doomed by his unrelenting wife to 
toil for life in mournful solitude, amidst the accumulated refine- 
ments of mental and physical oppression ; worse .than negro 
bondage, for the African slave, by moral sanction, may openly 
have his lawful wife, and hold an honorable home; but the 
cast-off and fettered husband has no domestic hearth stone or 
cover, no tolerated social sanctuary but his own soul. 

''Disappointment in Marriage. — Listen, I pray you, to the 
stories of the disappointed in marriage : collect all their com- 
plaints : hear their mutual reproaches : upon what fatal hinge 
do the greatest part of them turn ? < They were mistaken in the 
person/ Some disguise either of body or mind is seen through 
in the first domestic scuffle : some fair ornament, perhaps the 
very one which won the heart, the ornament of a meek and quiet 
spirit, falls off. It is not the Rachel/or ivhom I have served — 
Why hast thou then beguiled me? 

"Be open, be honest: give yourself for what you are; con- 
ceal nothing, varnish nothing; and if these fair weapons will 
not do, better not conquer at all than concpier for a day : when 
the night is passed, 'twill ever be the same story — And it came 
to pass, behold it ivas Leah ! 

"If the heart beguiles itself in its choice, and imagination 
will give excellencies which are not the portion of flesh and 
blood : when the dream is over, and we awake in the morning, 
it matters little whether 'tis Rachel or Leah — be the object 
what it will ; as it must be on the earthly side, at least, of per- 


fection — it will fall short of the work of fancy, whose existence 
is in the clouds. 

"In such cases of deception, let not man exclaim, as Jacob 
does in his — What is it thou hast done unto me? — for 'tis his 
own doings, and he has nothing to lay his fault on but the 
heat and poetic indiscretion of his own passions." — Sterne's 
Sermons, vol. iv. p. 11. 

Singular instances of secret mental and physical inconsist- 
encies often occur, as persons, who cannot abide each other's 
society, are both acceptable and preferable to others; and hus- 
band and wife, mutually affectionate and fond, who have no 
children together, but by former and after nuptials are parents ; 
in both of these cases, their remaining together should be 

If the familiar connections of marriage unfold repulsive, 
moral, or personal obliquities, it is wholly immaterial whether 
they have or have not been known; this creates a flat bar to 
future cohabitation. 

A compromise for money or support, or from a ridiculous 
regard to what is called public opinion, where there are just and 
natural causes of mental, moral, or physical repugnance, sterili- 
ty, chronic maladies, or distinct deformity of person, mind, or 
morals, is absurd, disgusting, and unnatural. 

All these are painful and mournful afflictions, for which the 
parties will find no sympathy, but much contempt and derision 
by their exposure. 

It is a sharp corner on the road of life to turn, and here 
they should solemnly pause, and deal frankly with each other. 

If one has been guilty of open fraud, the aggressor should be 
spurned and forever left without a word. 

If both have been thus guilty, what is left but to separate in 
silence ? 

Under all circumstances of disagreement, they are bound by 
every tie of honor not to persecute each other, but to loose the 
cord for life ; not to reproach, abuse, and prate of lawful wed- 
ded rights, and claim rewards and ransom to go off, which is 
of the spirit of the pirate and brigand. 

To scourge, defy, and persecute for pelf and bread, harass 
by threats of law for forced decrees in alimony, is brutal vio- 

None but a lazy dog would eat for life another's hard-earned 


bread ; it is a mean and dirty theft, for which a man should be 
consumed by public scorn. 

In woman, chaste, proud, pure woman, it is revolting to sub- 
vert all pride and wedded honor to vile and sordid sloth. 

Repulsive and unfit on trial fair, perhaps she is found, in 
soul and body, for partnership, and still demands the bond and 
monthly pound of flesh. 

The beasts of the earth love their caves and covers, and quit 
them but for cause. All decent men and women lean on home, 
and leave it not for naught. 

This short, uncertain life is dark and cheerless, unlighted by 
a nuptial sky. 

_ A malicious veto to the great purposes and claims of mar- 
riage, with wanton refusal for release, is black and remorseless 

It is a wrong to which words can add no tinge or hue; mur- 
der is deliverance and mercy; captivity is regal glory; for 
slaves may taste the golden cup of pure connubial joy. 

They hold each other to a dreadful or a glorious doom; it is 
the sweet and rapturous liberty of natural, lawful, wedded 
love ; the cold, congealed, and rocky ice of frozen celibacy ; or 
the lewd and promiscuous indulgence of sensual proscription. 

No conquering warrior, no pagan slaver, no beastly herds- 
man, has ever put this interdict, this unnatural doom, on man 
or brute ; but they who, for better and for worse, gulp perjury 
for gluttony and gold. 

It is said there is an unpardonable sin, an offence against 
God and man, for which no human law was ever made, no 
human arm can reach. 

Name it ! Was it ever named ? Can it be named ? Is 
there a sound for tongue or ear that can define, express, or 
nominate its loathsome character ? 

_ Name it in whisper, or write it down, and he who essays to 
give it audible articulation will strangle in hydrophobic con- 
vulsions. Such a husband, such a wife, personify this spas- 
modic and unutterable substantive. 


To the vulgar there is but one infidelity — that which, in 
woman, at least, can never be expiated or forgiven. They know 
not the thousand shades in which change disguises itself; they 
trace not the fearful progress of the alienation of the heart. 



But to those who truly and deeply love, there is an infidelity 
with which the person has no share. Like ingratitude, it is 
punished by no laws. We are powerless to avenge ourselves. 

When two persons are united by affection, and the love of 
one survives that of the other, who can measure the anguish 
of the unfortunate who watches the extinction of a light which 
nothing can re-illume ! It mostly happens, too, that the first 
discovery is sudden. There is a deep trustfulness in a loving 
heart; it is blind to the gradual decrease of sympathy — its 
divine charity attributes the absent eye, the chilling word, to a 
thousand causes save the true one ; care — illness — some world- 
ly trouble — some engrossing thought, and (poor fool that it is !) 
endeavors by additional tenderness to compensate for the pain 
that is not of its own causing. Alas ! the time has come when 
it can no longer compensate. It hath ceased to be the all-in- 
all to its cruel partner. Custom has brought its invariable 
curse, and indifference gathers round the place in which we had 
garnered up our soul. At length the appalling light breaks 
upon us — we discover we are no longer loved. And what 
remedy have we ? None ! Our first, our natural feeling is 
resentment. We are conscious of treachery; this ungrateful heart 
that has fallen from us, how have we prized and treasured it — 
how have we sought to shield it from every arrow — how have 
we pleased ourselves, in solitude and in absence, with yearning 
thoughts of its faith and beauty ; now it is ours no more ! Then 
we break into wild reproaches — we become exacting — we watch 
every look — we gauge every action — we arc unfortunate — we 
weary— we offend. These our agonies — our impetuous bursts 
of passion — our ironical and bitter taunts, to which we half 
expect, as heretofore, to hear the soft word that turneth away 
wrath : these only expedite the fatal hour; they are new crimes 
in us; the very proofs of our bitter love are treasured and 
repeated as reasons why we should be loved no more ; as if 
without a throw, without a murmur, we could resign ourselves 
to so great a loss. Alas ! it is with fierce convulsions that the 
temple is rent in twain, and we hear the divinity depart. Some- 
times we stand in silence, and with a full heart, gazing upon 
those hard cold eyes which never again can melt in tenderness 
upon us. And our silence is dumb — its eloquence is gone. 
We are no longer understood. We long to die in order to be 
avenged. We half pray for some great misfortune, some 
agonizing illness, that it may bring to us our soother and our 


nurse. We say, "in affliction or in sickness, it could not thus 
desert us." We are mistaken. We are shelterless — the roof 
has heen taken from our heads — we are exposed to any and 
every storm. Then comes a sharp and dread sentiment of lone- 
liness and insecurity. We are left — weak children — in the 
dark. We are bereft more irrevocably than by death ; for will 
even the Hereafter that unites the happy dead that die lovingly, 
restore the love that has perished, ere life be dim ? 

}\ bat shall we do ? We have accustomed ourselves to love 
and to be loved. Can we turn to new ties, and seek in another 
that which is extinct in one ? How often is such a resource in 
vain ? Have we not given to this, the treacherous and the false 
friend — the best years of our life — the youth of our hearts — 
the flower of our affections ? Did we not yield up the harvest ? 
how little is there left for another to glean ! This makes the 
crime of the moral infidelity. The one who takes away 
from us his or her love, takes from us also the love of 
all else. We have no longer, perhaps, the youth and the at- 
tractions to engage affection. Once we might have chosen out 
of the world ; now the time is past. Who shall love us in our 
sear and yellow leaf, as in that time when we had most the 
qualities that win love ? It was a beautiful sentiment of one 
whom her lord proposed to put away : "Give me then back," 
said she, " that which I brought to you." And the man 
answered, in his vulgar coarseness of soul, " Your fortune shall 
return to you." " I thought not of fortune," said the lady ; 
" give me back my real wealth — give me back my beauty and 
my youth — give me back the virginity of soul — give me back 
the cheerful mind, and the heart that had never been disap- 

Yes, it is of these that the unfaithful rob us when they dis- 
miss us back upon the world, and tell us, with a bitter mockery, 
to form new ties. In proportion to the time that we have been 
faithful — in proportion to the feelings we have sacrificed — in 
proportion to the wealth of soul, of affection, of devotion, that 
we have consumed, are we shut out from the possibility of 
atonement elsewhere. But this is not all : the other occupa- 
tions of the world are suddenly made stale and barren to us ; 
the daily avocations of life, the common pleasures, the social 
diversions, so tame in themselves, had their charm when we 
could share, and talk over them with another. It was sympa- 
thy which made them sweet; the sympathy withdrawn, they 


are nothing to us, worse than nothing. The talk has become 
the tinkling cymbal, and society the gallery of pictures. Am- 
bition, toil, the great aims of life, even these cease abruptly to 
excite. What, in the first place, made labor grateful and am- 
bition dear ? Was it not the hope that their rewards would be 
reflected upon another self? And now there is no other self. 
And, in the second place (and this is a newer consideration), does 
it not require a certain calmness and freedom of mind for great 
efforts? Persuaded of the possession of what most we value, 
we can look abroad with cheerfulness and hope ; the conscious- 
ness of a treasure inexhaustible by external failures makes us 
speculative and bold. Now, all things are colored by our de- 
spondency; our self-esteem, that necessary incentive to glory, 
is humbled and abased. Our pride has received a jarring and 
bitter shock. We no longer feel that we arc equal to stern ex- 
ertion. We wonder at what we have dared before. And there- 
fore it is that, when Othello believes himself betrayed, the 
occupations of his whole life suddenly become burdensome and 

" Farewell," he saith, 

" Farewell the tranquil mind — farewell content." 

And then, as the necessary but unconscious link in the chain 
of thought, he continues at once : — 

" Farewell the plumed troops, and the big wars 
That make ambition virtue — oh, farewell! 
Farewell the neighing steed — and the shrill trump : 
The spirit stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife, 
The royal banner, and all quality, 
Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war — 
Farewell ! — Othello's occupation's gone.'' 

But there is another and more permanent result from this 
bitter treason. Our trustfulness in human nature is dimin- 
ished. We are no longer the credulous enthusiasts of good. 
The pillars of the moral world seem shaken. We believe, we 
hope, no more from the faith of others. 



Marriage defined — Urged to it by passion for reproduction of species — 
Parents — Children — Of the married in London — Discontented married 
not peculiar to large cities — Paris as to this — Causes of illicit connections 
— Divorce for all good causes — For disagreement, and personal dislike 
— No force — Issue — Definitions of wife and husband — Marriage not a 
religious ordinance — The Athenian law as to marriage — Disaffinities may 
be affinities on a change — All prefer marriage — Relief in law for every 
dilemma but marriage — Public opinion — Arabs — Indians — Ishmael and 
Isaac — Widows — Washington — Napoleon — Present system. • 

Marriage is defined to be u a compact between man and 
woman, for the procreation and education of children." 

" Society has ordained that it shall continue for life; and the 
reason is, because, children gradually succeeding one another, the 
parents have hardly done with the care of their education, be- 
fore they are themselves unft for a second marriage." The 
ancients awarded bounties to parents, and deprived bachelors of 
the rights of inheritance. 

The same author says, " With «s, the laics hold out no temp- 
tations to marriage ; and prudence will in general recommend 
celibacy."— (2 Bac. Ab. 524.) 

This theory is sustained by all writers; and appears to be the 
philosophy of marriage. 

The primary temporal purpose of man's creation, therefore, 
was for the reproduction of his species. 

To this great end the woman is most distinctly and intimately 
dedicated. The impetuous passions of our common nature in- 
cite reciprocal irritations, by which the sexes are precipitated 

The secret design of nature in this is procreation ; and to se- 
cure this result with the best advantage, and with no expense 
to society, it has ordained marriage ; so that the parties, and not 
society, shall be responsible for the bringing forth and bringing 
up of children. The great object of propagation is, in this way, 


accomplished by individual enterprise, without any trouble or 
expense to society. 

This is not a very encouraging revelation to make to a young 
man, just starting upon his arduous destiny; nor a very flatter- 
ing compliment to an old man, after he is worn out in the 
bringing forth and bringing up slavery. 

But it seems to be literally true ; and it is not wonderful that 
an old man, broken down with servitude, in the anxious drudg- 
ery of nature and society, should have murmured out to his 
fellow-men this prudent admonition for celibacy. 

We are urged by passion to marriage; and instinctively 
struggle through the anxious task with superhuman endurance 
and suffering. 

We are held, by the crafty purposes of nature, in blind and 
thrilling raptures of animal excitement, until its object is ac- 
complished, and then it condemns us to the apathy of old age. 

In, this heyday of impetuous passion, there is less sentimental 
purity than vanity and pride. 

The same trick and guile, by which nature makes the wolf 
bring forth, defend, and protect her cubs, prompt man and 
woman to feed and cherish their offspring. 

All these affections are artfully contrived, for the purposes 
of successful propagation. They are elements of philosophy, 
not of morals. Parents have much less control over their 
children than is supposed ; and too much is expected from what 
is called a good bringing up. 

If the blood and breed are perverse and bad, there will be 
more apparent than real efforts made for restraint. 

Men and women, who feel it a matter of policy to support 
respectable exteriors, go to church, and send their children to 
school; instil into their minds no sentiments of virtue, if they 
have none themselves; and hence their children come to nothing, 
and are censured for neglecting opportunities they never had, 
or could appreciate. 

These, and similar examples, infect well-inclined children, 
who are a constant source of anxiety at home. 

Many honorable and devoted fathers are baffled by the re- 
fractory dispositions of their children, who insult them by re- 
ferring to out-door examples as authority for disobedience and 

And they are too often frustrated, by the never-failing pro- 
pensity of a weak and infatuated mother to excuse and justify 


their faults, and who never joins in their constraint and pun- 

How surprisingly this propensity in woman develops the 
mysterious design of her succedaneous creation ! How many 
old and worn-down fathers have slaved and dragged their lives 
away, in toil and self-denial, to give their sons and daughters 
smart and encouraging portions, in land and stock, wherewith 
to start the world ; and fastened, safe and sound for life, sure 
maintenance for their helpless wives and offspring; and after- 
wards ruined themselves by being surety for their children; or 
have sent help and succor for them to a distant land; and 
watched and doted on them to the last, as first they loved and 
fondled over them in helpless infancy ! 

How many parents, meek, devoted, patient, and self-resigned, 
have thus by nature's instincts lived, and final respite had from 
all their toils and pains by death in dismal pauperism, un- 
heeded and forgotten ! 

What son or daughter ever made a joyful sacrifice for those 
that gave them life? or died in infamy, within a living parent's 
reach ? 

This is the high and mighty course of nature — the arbitrary 
law for constant fecundation. 

The last-begotten blindly blunders on his doom, and flings 
behind him far away, by instinct, not from choice, parental love, 
which stands aghast. 

Until the sear and yellow leaf of time has fallen upon their 
narrow path, they do not learn that nature has ordained their 
children for their destiny; and that the infinite emergencies of 
its execution leave no room for those behind. 

Alas for the faithful father and mother, whose lives have 
been, with singleness of love, piously and devoutly devoted to 
the protection and companionship of their beloved babes ! They 
will find them, as maturity dawns, reserved, unkind, truant, 
rebellious, and, at last, scattered and gone, without regret, gra- 
titude, or remembrance. 

Oh! it is then a lonely time of night — very dark, and bitter 
cold! Still, it is nature's sentence; if cruel, there is mercy in 
the judgment; for life is now wasted, and sorrow hushes down 
the bursting heart, and gently lays it in the grave. 

Why then should the bonds of matrimony, designed for in- 
dulgent love and harmony, be perverted to purposes of discord 
and rude restraint? If society has contrived this sanction for 


its own security, it should not bold the sway for oppression. 
The practical barbarity of this unmeaning denial of justice can- 
not be disputed. A recent report of a committee of the Eng- 
lish Commons showed tbat but one-fourth of the married persons 
in London lived in peace ; that one-fourth were in constant 
turmoil; that one-fourth did not cohabit; and the other fourth 
were separated, and lived apart. This, perhaps, is a sample of 
the married world. 

The moral contumacy thus exposed cannot be exclusively 
attributed to the supposed licentiousness of large towns and 
cities; on the contrary, there were 12,707 public women re- 
gistered in Paris, from 1816 to 1831, a period of fifteen years; 
of whom 12,201 were French; and of this number 11,875, all 
but 326, were from the country parts of France; the proportion 
being almost four to one against the rural districts, and in favor 
of the capital. 

To be sure the whole population of France is greater than 
the population of Paris; but only a small portion of these wo- 
men came from the country ; whereas, perhaps, none of them 
who belonged to Paris had gone from it. 

The immense proportion of men and women, married and 
single, found in this condition, no doubt mainly comes from the 
vile and unnatural celibacy which the fear of public odium 
forces on those who cannot live in concord ; who have no legal 
means of shaking loose from abortive matrimonies; and are 
therefore tempted, and led off into unlawful indulgences. 

Is it not wonderful that there is a remnant left of chastity ? 
and is it strange that in some places the illegitimate exceed the 
legitimate births, and that licentious debauchery does not defile 
and pollute all the channels of society ? 

Why not give by law the free and honorable remedy for full 
and absolute divorce, wherever incongruities prevail ? To limit 
this remedy, by its present restrictions, to certain named crimes, 
places the innocent in the power of the guilty, who may con- 
ceal their infidelities by the plausible disguise of genteel inter- 
course; defy, insult, and condemn a wife or husband to perpetual 

Evidence of flirting with other women, neglect, aversion, 
conjugal denial or unfitness, drunkenness, rudeness, gambling, 
refusal or omission to provide, laziness and loafing, morbid 
virility, sterility, and every such default, whether from accident, 


casualty, malice, or repugnance, should be a full and sufficient 
cause for divorce for a woman. 

And proof of aversion, neglect, infidelity, sterility, drunken- 
ness, conjugal denial, Messalinaism, disobedience, impertinent 
talking back, insolent behavior, obscenity, being from home 
and flirting, tramping the streets without leave, by a woman, 
should in like manner be good cause for a divorce. 

The result would be to maintain conjugal propriety, and 
give millions of honest and valuable members of society a 
chance to rid themselves of the curse of involuntary celibacy; 
more odious than any calamity which has ever fallen on the 
human race. 

The idea of forcing husband and wife, against their will, to 
live together, and rear children, is beastly, unnatural, and im- 

Discoveries, creating occasions for separation, seldom occur, 
until after the birth of one or more children. 

This is most unnecessarily made an excuse for public opinion 
to force upon them the endurance and continuance of disaffec- 
tion ; which must increase, and never is diminished by time ; 
and which therefore turns the existence of the child into a state 
of wretchedness, moral and physical. 

The early months of infancy demand a mother's care. Let 
it remain with her during this period, if proper; and after this, 
male or female, the child is better off with strangers than at 
home with strife. 

If it is poor, it should be placed with an industrious mechanic 
or farmer; where it will be, nine times out of ten, better fed 
and brought up than if at such a home. 

If it is to be educated, every one knows how much better the 
restraints and discipline of a school are than the superficial 
oversight of quarrelsome parents. 

Cut quick this chafing rope; knock loose the galling fetters; 
and strike for glorious liberty. 

Out upon vile bondage for a man or a woman ! It is base. 
If they are glad in unity, the chains are gold; the silken cords 
are heavenly slavery, mutual joy, and glorious love. 

But if there is hate and loathing, to hold them fast, or let 
one hold the other tight for life, is revolting, detestable, and 

The objects of matrimony are clearly defeated by these unfair 
unjust, and useless restrictions upon marriage. 


The restraints are cruel and dishonorable; they encourage 
unlawful intercourse and the production of spurious issue, who, 
with the best means of education, hold place in society under 
great disadvantages to themselves and the community. 

Woman was not made a help-mate, but a "help meet" for 
man; and they were both told that the man should "rule over 
her." Not that she was to be his mate, or that they were to 
be co-partners, with joint powers of discretion, control, and 
management; but that he was "to rule over her." 

The word "woman" is the name of her sex. The word 
"wife" means a woman who has a husband; the word "hus- 
band" is derived from the Saxon "hus," house, and "bruena," 
land or farm. "The master of the house and land;" "the 

Not a master with despotic power, for arbitrary servitude and 
oppression ; for the wife is his "help-meet," that is, a companion 
"meet" and suitable for his counsel, comfort, and "help" not 
to be his menial servant. 

This is the sense in which this word is used, and also that 
he is the "master" of his "farm," his pursuits, his abode; the 
accountable and responsible provider for his household; the 
delegated defender and appointed advocate of its peace, honor, 
and safety here and hereafter. 

Adam and Eve were not married by any ceremony. When 
Eve was brought to Adam, she said nothing; but he said, "she 
is now bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh, because she was 
taken out of man', and therefore a man shall cleave unto his 

That is, if a man and woman contract to live together, he is 
then her husband or master, and she is his wife or woman, his 
"help-meet." The "help" proper, natural, appropriate, and 
"meet" for him, and "he shall ride over her." 

That is, that the man shall protect and defend the person 
and purity of woman; and if he takes her for his "help" and 
holds her "meet" for his companionship in the holy co-partner- 
ship of marriage, that he "shall cleave unto his wife." And 
that he shall be held responsible for the solemn and confiding 
surrender she makes to him of her heart and her destiny, for 
time and perhaps for eternity. 

The words "husband" and "wife" are intended to signify 
and describe a man who has taken a womau as his "meet" or 


proper " help," and a woman who has agreed to be thus taken 
and "ruled over" by the man, is called "a "wife" 

These words are proper names, like those designed to nomi- 
nate an office, position, or station; or a relation borne by one to 
others, as king, general, judge, master, servant, husband, wife, 
and no more. 

And the agreement between a husband and wife is called 
marriage; that is the name given to the contract, as "a mort- 
gage," "a deed," "a note," "a hill of exchange," "a charter 
party" " lease," " bond" &c. No other interpretation has ever 
been given to these words by intelligent men. 

A true woman, who has good sense and properly understands 
the design of her creation, and is not so depraved and vulgar 
as to revolt against it, will glory in her proper destiny. She 
knows that " a loving heart is better and stronger than wisdom;" 
and while she remains in her appropriate sphere, and employs 
her wonderful and mysterious faculties upon man, she will hold 
undisturbed dominion over his heart. 

Consult the intelligent wives and mothers whose lives have 
been dedicated to conjugal fidelity, and they will ratify this 
solemn truth by their devout and pious prayers, that Heaven 
will give them grace to bring up in the ways of virtue their 
beloved daughters, and fit them to become faithful and obedient 

Matrimony is an important contract, involving consequences 
of great magnitude to the parties. 

It is a contract for time; perhaps for eternity; but it is only 
a human contract; to be governed by the same rules that govern 
all other contracts. To say that it shall not be dissolved but 
for crimes is as absurd as to say that an indenture of appren- 
ticeship, or any other contract, shall not be canceled but for 

Whereas, these and all other contracts but marriage are suf- 
fered constantly to be dissolved, by the consent of the parties and 
by authority of law, for any cause which renders it expedient. 

With the exception of modern Europe, this contract has 
always stood upon the same footing with all other contracts. 

It was never made a religious ordinance by Divine authority, 
any more than births or deaths. 

The Prophets, John the Baptist, our Saviour, and the Apos- 
tles, mai-ried nobody; nor docs it appear that marriages were 


solemnized in churches, or in their presence, or with the sanction 
of any religious or civil officer. 

It was left to the parties to make and terminate it as they 
pleased, as all other contracts. 

It derives no additional solemnity, strength, or sanction from 
its being made a religious ordinance by man. 

The Old and the New Dispensations had their solemn and 
holy ordinances instituted by Divine command; and it may be 
asked whether it is not profane to fasten new ones on them to 
accommodate man's vain-glory and presumption. 

Marriage is therefore a mere civil contract between the 
parties ; the proof, enforcement, and relief from which are go- 
verned by the same rules which govern all other contracts. 

To say that it shall not be dissolved like all other contracts, 
when it fails in its objects, and only for certain specified causes, 
without any allowances for youth, inexperience, haste, accident, 
and fraud, is exposing the parties to rigorous and unjust, penal- 
ties ; requires from them powers of discrimination and fore- 
cast which no human being ever had ; deters, alarms, and dis- 
courages them from marriage, and multiplies and increases the 
occasions and urgencies for unlawful intercourse. 

The object of marriage was to serve the mutual happiness of 
the parties; for the propagation of our species; and the pre- 
servation of morals. 

One of the great purposes of marriage was to enhance the 
happiness of the parties. 

The infinite and momentous consequences for good or evil 
which flow from this union, its securities for a life of felicity or 
shame, are so sure and certain, that in all times it has been 
looked to with trembling hope and fearful doubts. 

So intimate, quick, and lively was this exquisite and painful 
excitement with the Athenians, in addition to every precaution 
against the uncertainties of mutual affection and love, that the 
parties and their friends met in solemn homage, and made sa- 
crifice to the gods for their propitiation ; at which the victim's 
gall was thrown behind the altar, with meek and pious prayers, 
that malice and anger should be forever banished from their 

If all who arc married were happy, marriage would produce 
universal happiness. 

If one-half or three-fourths of all the married arc discon- 
tented with each other, then the object of marriage to that ex- 


tent is defeated, and the sum of its usefulness prevented ex- 
actly in proportion to the number of those disaffected. 

Now it has been seen that love must be reciprocal to pro- 
duce happiness ; and that with this feeling all other considera- 
tions are immaterial. 

That no law, human or divine, can create these impulses ; 
and that perhaps there is no neutral ground ; that it is love or 

It follows, therefore, that force is cruel, despotic, and naturally 
wrong; and that dissatisfied men and women, thus kept mar- 
ried by force, are made more wretched than they can be made 
by auy other calamity ; and that in this way the sum of human 
happiness, the first grand object of marriage, is defeated. 

This is suicidal and self-destruction ; and if it should go to 
the extent that it inevitably would go, if there was not some 
pure gold left in the crucible, the reaction would discover its 
own strength, and openly repudiate all marriage. 

The perpetual imposition of this contract when the parties 
are dissatisfied, one or both right or wrong, is absurd and un- 
natural. The senses of hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling, and 
feeling are identical ; and, unless diseased, their test is the 

With all, black and white, sweet and sour, &c., are the same; 
still the appreciation with some is in direct contradiction, and 
with others, in never-ending varieties. 

No two men agree as to their choice or use of the sour and 
sweet. One riots in the sweet and juicy sugar; while another 
delights in the acid of the lemon ; and each abhors the other. 

Is there any explanation or control of these contrarieties of 
choice ? Did any despot ever attempt these repugnances to 
thwart or force back ? And why attempt to compel man or 
woman to feast in nauseous loathing upon that which their in- 
scrutable appetites detest ? 

Red-hot irons, and every species of physical sufferings have 
been heaped on man ; but there never was contrived or put in 
use for legal torture a drastic purge or nauseous vomit. 

This punishment of forcing marriage upon the parties against 
their will, and refusing to give them relief for good cause of 
divorce, would seem to imply that the connection is unlawful, 
indecent, obscene, odious, and immoral ; that those who have 
the temerity to contract it shall have no help ; upon the princi- 



pie that the law goes upon of refusing aid or relief to parties who 
have made a contract for an illicit or unlawful intercourse. 

This was never done by Divine authority, nor by man, in 
any case except this. 

If we sin against God, he will permit us to repent. We 
are furnished with two chances for future happiness j we are 
born innocent, and, however we debase ourselves, we are suf- 
fered to repent, and be saved. 

One malefactor was pardoned on the cross, and the other 
perhaps would have been redeemed, if he had asked for mercy. 

We have every chance to escape from evil brought on by 
mishap or wilful folly. 

A suicide, a sick murderer, receives from man the refreshing 
cordial, the healing unguent. 

In all the perplexities of health and life, we help each other, 
however base or trodden down, unless forsooth in marriage. 

If the exigencies for this contract are so eminently and inti- 
mately identified with the existence of the race as to justify 
the force by law of connubial intercourse, there would then 
seem to be some reason in its perpetuity. But unless the first 
was necessary, the last is not required. 

If the formation of the contract is left open to the free will 
of the parties, its dissolution ought, in like manner, to be at 
their disposal. No man should be encouraged to swindle and 

A man is wandering in a rich and verdant orchard, loaded 
down with tempting, luscious, and fragrant fruit. His cold 
and sapless frame before had lived on air and sight. 

Instinct, perchance, with pause, now makes him look and 
look again upon the clustering glories loosely waving on the 
bending boughs; he marks again, and starts amazed; the 
blooming unctions tempt his new-born taste. 

The sudden appetite is roused to instant and impetuous hun- 
ger ; he dares to touch and press the smooth, delicious rapture 
to his burning lips ; wild convulsions and frenzy seize his burn- 
ing heart and brain. 

Involuntarily he eats, and finds the tree that bears that fruit 
has juice unpleasant to his mouth. Shall man decree, condemn, 
and sentence him for life to eat this bitter fruit, perhaps to 
others sweet? 

The happiness of society is not encouraged or secured by 
any unusual constraints upon this contract ; on the contrary, 


it is manifest that its peace, good order, and repose are dis- 
turbed and endangered. 

The interests of society are deeply concerned in maintaining 
a policy, by which no obstacles shall lie in the way of perma- 
nent and happy marriages. The contracting parties are free to 
act for themselves; they are not required by law to get mar- 

They are permitted to exercise their unbiassed will. There 
is no recommendation or force. 

And the making of the contract rests upon the same grounds 
as the formation of all other lawful contracts, without the least 
interference by the law. 

In all other cases, the parties are allowed to revoke their 
contracts, and make others of the same nature and for the 
same purposes with other persons. There is no reason why 
the rule should be different in marriage contracts. 

No author or authority can be found, nor any argument 
given, to show the reason why the law should permit and sanc- 
tion a relief from one contract more than another; or why 
there should be absolute restrictions upon the dissolution of 
the contract of marriage. 

It is asserted, but no reason is given for it, the laws of 
some of the churches peremptorily forbid its dissolution for any 

They say that marriages are registered in heaven. They 
should say that all contracts, however trifling or small, are re- 
corded there; and we are told that there is no discrimination. 
Marriages are no more binding than a contract to pay a just debt 
of one cent; and there is as much sin in breaking the word in 
one case as in the other. 

The conventional codes of ecclesiastics differ as to excuses 
for all breaches of faith. They are generally inexorable, and 
hold that hell is the certain doom of every sin. 

The better argument seems to be that mercy and compas- 
sion for the frailties and accidents of life are more reasonable 
not as a means or a medium of escape, but relief and reformation. 

This policy has been adopted by civil society, and, like the 
law laid down in the Scriptures, as they are now very generally 
understood, there is no condition into which a man falls, even 
by crime, in which he is refused the privilege of reformation. 

Executive and popular pardons are carried to a point of 
almost censurable complacency. 


And no code ever made by man failed to give liberal and 
generous relief, in cases of mistake or accident. 

Fraud everywhere vacates a contract ; to show the fact of 
fraud ipso facto annuls the bargain. 

And mistakes and accidents, when fairly made out, are always 
relieved against. 

The rules of common sense and natural justice would revolt 
at the bare thought of holding a man for life to a covenant made 
in haste, and without a knowledge of his rights. 

It would be savage cruelty to tell him he should have seen 
to it beforehand ; that he should have been more careful, and 
it serves him right. 

None but a brute would breathe forth such a flagrant trespass 
of the golden rule, to do unto others as you would have them 
do unto you. 

Legislative and judicial relief has been in all times given to 
hard bargains ; and if it were not so, the refusal would involve 
the impracticable and false proposition that all men are perfect 
with the powers of present scrutiny and foreknowledge ; or 
that public law is made to contrive machines of torture. 

All this is as clear to every man's mind as the injustice and 
absurdity of making the contract of marriage an exception to 
the general rule of permitting the parties to dissolve it them- 
selves ; or for the courts to do it for them where they cannot 
agree, upon the same terms as all other contracts are governed. 

It is admitted that it may be done for certain specified 
offences ; but not for aversion or mere incompatibility of taste 
and bad behavior. These are always fatal obstacles to co- 
habitation. Sometimes, crimes and the specified causes of 
divorce are not so. 

Put the party on oath ; let the answer, with its corrobora- 
tions and contradictions, be listened to and witnessed by the 
tribunal ; if it is not true, reject it ; if it is true, give relief. 

The complaining parties must be heard in all cases when the 
cause of complaint is exclusively within their knowledge. This 
is a rule in every day's practice. It is said to arise " ex neces- 
sitate rei." 

Hear also the opposite side. If there has been fraud by 
either upon the other's property, require indemnity. See too if 
there is affectation, impertinent or sinister collision. If so, 
dismiss the complainant ; but if either is really dissatisfied, cut 
the cord. 


They can do each other no good, and are useless to society. 
They cannot be forced to live together. If there is a chance 
for reconciliation, defer the decree; but do not refuse relief ; 
together hold them not by force. 

Let all good equities be done ; restoration of property ; mu- 
tual concessions of the truth ; but no cruelty ; no force. 

Both were willing at the first, or they would not have mar- 
ried. If they cease to be willing from any cause, why hold 
them together after marriage any more now than force them to 
marry against their will ? 

It is as absurd and unjust to constrain them to live together 
against their consent, as to force them to marry against their 

The former would be more reasonable ; for before trial there 
might be a chance that they would agree ; but after trial and 
failure the chance is gone. 

Complaints in filiation and a mittimus for prison are pre- 
sently abandoned upon the consent of the defendant to marry 
the complainant, who holds the defendant on her own oath 
alone; and if she refuse the offei*, her charge is dismissed. 

Who ever witnessed one of these scenes of barbarism with- 
out disgust ? They are enacted every day ; and though obscure 
and brutal, they are just as reasonable, and perhaps more con- 
sistent with the chances of the subsequent harmony and pro- 
pagation of the parties, than the same force employed to keep 
the parties together after a voluntary marriage and the disco- 
very of mutual or separate occasions of personal dislike. 

This legal relief is never asked for by persons in the humble 
walks of life, who have no position to lose ; they separate and 
squander without compunction ; or waste time ; they run round 
till they get suited; and are always married. 

There is not with this class of the community a tithe of the 
illicit intercourse that there is with the dissatisfied whose means 
and condition fasten them to society ; and who are therefore 
the victims of public opinion ; who are useless to the public ; 
lead lives of domestic torture, unnatural celibacy, or secret and 
unlawful intercourse. 

The true policy is to adapt public institutions to what is ex- 
pedient as well as that which is necessary. 

The contingencies of society frequently demand legal tolera- 
tions, which are by some considered wrong. 

The use of ardent spirits and theatrical exhibitions are ; by 


some, considered immoral. It has been found that the regula- 
tion, and not the prohibition by law, of these and other more 
repugnant and indelicate propensities, better subserves the pub- 
lic peace and morals. 

So, too, with marriage. Some hold that it can only be dis- 
solved with death, and the erroneous inclinations of society lean 
to that conclusion ; but experience has shown that this is im- 
practicable, and its dissolution, for some causes, has been sanc- 

Thus, the rigor of the rule has been relaxed, and the con- 
cession has been acknowledged, that it may lawfully be dis- 

Now, if it may be dissolved for any cause, why not for every 
good cause ? 

What is the criterion? Who is to judge ? 

The criterion, and the judge of that criterion, is the true 
practical result. 

If the experience of generations has shown that married per- 
sons cannot be made to live together unless they choose, and 
that the refusal to release them renders them useless or im- 
moral, then the law should recognize, and, by its wholesome dis- 
pensation, meet that result, excuse the unfortunate parties from 
their dilemma, and relieve society of the odium it suffers by 
these inevitable transgressions. 

That is, if husband and wife may be divorced for one good 
cause, that it shall be lawful to divorce them for any good 
cause ; and that every cause is a good one which works a per- 
manent and settled obstacle to the moral and animal fruitions 
which marriage was designed to consecrate. 

So much for relief by the law; but where the parties consent, 
where is the possible objection ? 

If it is urged that they should be protected, and one should 
not be suffered to coax, persuade, menace or force the other for 

Prevent this by a solemn deed in legal form, with all the 
just and safe precautions of judicial private examinations, by 
which coercion and fraud are now guarded against in the grant 
of a wife's lands. 

There is a manifest inconsistency in the impertinent solici- 
tude affected to be entertained in preventing divorces by col- 
lusion, or by consent of the parties, when no sort of provision 
is made for the safety or protection of persons from frauds and 
impositions while they are contracting marriages. 


Then the door is left wide open ; innocent and spotless chil- 
dren are inveigled, beguiled, and seduced away to scandalous 
and clandestine marriages, by the most heartless scoundrels, for 
the most atrocious purposes. 

Has any father or mother, however horrible and true their 
cause of complaint, of brutal, beastly marriage, ever been told 
by a magistrate that the law furnished him with forms or 
power for writ or injunction against the debauched marauder 
upon virgin purity ? 

And yet, if this heart-broken, crushed, and suffering angel 
kneels at the altar of justice, bathed in tears of sorrow, and 
overwhelmed with wrongs insufferable, her outspread hands 
upon the holy Gospel, and her brimful eyes upturned to 
Heaven, declares how much in innocence she loved and was 
betrayed, and how she has been roused to consciousness by 
coarse and brutal wrongs, she is told, for better and for worse, 
she is bound to suffer and submit, for so the Lord hath said, 
unless for certain crimes indictment can be made and proved. 

The crimes he does she dares not see, and if she did, she 
cannot prove, and thus, for life, she is cast away upon the 
stormy deep, no helm or sail, to fill with woe and sink in death. 

Reverse this picture : let the denial of conjugal duty and 
common right be by either to the other, made with common 
caution and no art, and it is plain that all legal technicalities 
can be defied. 

The injured party has no redress, and marriage, no odds how 
it was made, in fun or fraud, is literal hell on earth. 

For every man and woman thus condemned to living death, 
the law professes to be glorified; but society is robbed out of 
their usefulness in this life, and heaven, perhaps, in the world 
to come. No lawful propagation comes from them. 

If there are but two or ten of such on earth, their wanton, 
unnatural condemnation to celibacy is an unmeaning and ac- 
cursed injury to them and all the world, and the most damned 
wrong that man did ever put upon his fellow man. 

The strength and glory of a kingdom " consist in the mul- 
titude of its people, and, therefore, celibacy, above all things, 
ought to be discouraged." 

Whence comes this gasconading ethical flourish, but from 
black hypocrisy? 

Who strips, by infamous juggling, the kingdom of its natural 
power to shine in lawful glory? 


If three-fourths of all who marry do not cohabit because 
they will not, and they cannot be forced to it, then, by vulgar 
power and coarse profanity, the world is filched of more than 
half its honest treasures. 

For, if they had a chance, they all would change by harm- 
less joint or legal shifts, until a final fit in all congruity and 
love would set them sober, solid down in honorable harmony 
for life. 

It cannot be truly said that those misfits are always morally 
wrong; or why do sometimes both desert, and, but for want of 
formal sanction, live for life in love and peace with others ? 

If, thus unhelped by public lift, they join in all that nature 
prompts, is it for sensual lust alone? and would they not, if 
possible, if free to act, add marriage to their voluntary and 
natural harmony? 

No such man or woman ever preferred secret and shameful 
intercourse to ratified and open coverture. 

Out of twelve thousand unfortunate women in a European 
metropolis, all but two had been betrayed into vice by gross 
ignorance, fraud, seduction, and want: and so mysterious is the 
exquisite texture of the female character, that numerous in- 
stances were found in which this revolting sacrifice had been 
secretly made for bread for starving husbands, children, and 

The pungent promptings of ungovernable virility are fierce; 
it is natui-e's law, designed for wise and obvious use, to make 
us mutually love and reproduce our perishing race. 

But with its invincible urgency, there are blended, as with the 
flame, the soft and mellow rainbow shades of bright seraphic 

The passions are warmed and fanned by never-dying instinct ; 
and purely, proudly blended with an honest hope for all the 
holy joy and harmless promptings of sweet celestial love. 

It is not beastly lust; the charge against man in this is 
false; it is a base and flagrant lie, conceived with seared and 
envious hate. 

Man is rude by mixture with a coarse and wrangling world. 
Example strong, temptations sharp, lead him to folly, selfish- 
ness, and crime against his fellow man. 

But for woman, old and young, who on him look and smile, 
as did his mother and his sister, his heart is full of peace and 


He loves them all j and will fight and toil, and slave his life 
away to save and give them bread. 

Mutual, pure, and blessed love, the living unction of our 
inmost souls, so sweet, so pure, that it cannot be marred or 
quenched ! 

It may be rudely chafed and wronged, but it will leap up 
with hope till mutual peace and joy are found. 

Why whip and scourge it down in honor's name ? Why not 
let it, trembling, verge to the almighty loadstone of its inevita- 
ble destiny ? 

It is demonstrated that marriage happiness is not promoted, 
and that propagation is not secured, but most seriously impeded, 
by the arbitrary enforcement of the contract of marriage. 

And it will now be shown that morals and public decency 
are not promoted by it, and that, on the contrary, this miscon- 
ceived and misapplied regulation occasions nearly all the secret 
and open prostitution in the world. 

It is much more unreasonable to prevent parties from being 
divorced who are essentially unprepared to live together than 
it would be to forbid marriage or to interdict the commerce of 
the sexes altogether. 

If those unmarried were to obey this injunction, and really 
abstain, it is as to that the same; but the difference between 
them and the married is that, if the married disobey, they are 
guilty of adultery, which, by some laws, is punished by death ; 
whereas, those unmarried are but simple fornicators, who are 
never punished. 

It is seen that men may consistently live single, and that 
women cannot; yet men hav? as great a desire for marriage as 
women, and, whenever they see their way clear, they almost 
always get wives, and make large and noble contributions at 
the shrine of marriage. 

Rich and educated men marry poor and ignorant women for 
their innocence and simplicity — educate them, and cherish their 
homes with a true devotion. 

Woman has more ardor and excitement, but her nature is 
incapable of the deep and solid attachment which pervades the 
heart of man. 

Her love is more lofty; his more firm; hers is more fervent; 
his is more durable. 

No obstacle should be suffered to lie in the way of marriage ; 


and every facility should be afforded by law to encourage its 
legitimate accommodation. 

The reciprocations of nature are essential to health and life. 

Whatever obstructs or discourages their lawful indulgence 
condemns the sexes to abstinence and illicit intercourse. 

Those who have gone into monastic seclusion are charged 
with insincerity and infamous subterfuges ; and, if true to their 
faith, they inevitably and prematurely perish. 

These restrictions upon marriage most intimately, if not al- 
most exclusively, inconvenience persons of intelligence and pri- 
vate enterprise; the class of society that constitutes its moral 
and political resources. 

Their number is relatively few; and their services so infinitely 
important in maintaining the balance of order against anarchy, 
that their influence cannot be spared. 

If they have a fair chance, they all become useful and valua- 
ble members of society. 

Their natural impulses incline them to take rank with respect- 
able men, and assist in maintaining the substantial interests of 
the public. And if they do not do so, it is because they are 

Those who have no such aspirations, ten, if not one hundred 
to one of the great mass, who are ignorant and helpless, float 
about, the sport of vicissitudes, without stability, thrift, industry, 
or providence. 

They take no interest in the institutions of society ; look at 
them as childrelf gaze at stars. They never rise above, and 
generally are below the grade of dependents, servants, laborers, 
soldiers or mariners; they attempt business, and fail for want 
of sagacity and enterprise. 

All the legitimate pursuits and professions are much embar- 
rassed, and society grievously wronged, by this half-witted race. 
It would be much better if very many now engaged on their 
own account would remain in secondary spheres, where they 
might be useful and avoid exposure. 

The question under notice is wholly indifferent to them; their 
shades of morals and good and bad propensities are irrespective 
of mind. 

Their animal wants are few; their mental capacities scarcely 
above the first grade of humanity. They are insensible to emu- 
lation and hope, and have no thought but for the present. They 
shift about as their fears or wants suggest. 


If they cannot agree, they pay no regard to their marriage 
obligations; seldom quarrel; separate by agreement or desert 
each other without ceremony; are always married, and rear 
their children at their own cost. 

The humble and obscure condition of these people keeps them 
from public notice; but, notwithstanding the great number of 
abandoned and dissolute persons amongst them, there are very 
few who are unmarried. 

They equally abhor celibacy and promiscuous intercourse. 
Right or wrong, they will get married, until they are suited; 
and thousands of them, all over the world, in the face of exist- 
ing marriages, without disguise or concealment, are fully recog- 
nized as respectable, and live in commendable harmony. 

If the result is a moral and civil advantage, then they are 
right, and the constraint referred to is wrong. 

They shun vice and immorality; and so far as they can, they 
contribute to the cause of industry, good order, and fraternal 

They obey the first law of conjugation; which is in proud 
and voluntary faith for one husband and one wife. 

The Arab, or the Choctaw in his aboriginal ignorance, may 
have his concubines; but he detests a strumpet; and proudly 
sustains through life the wife of his choice. 

The brigand or the gipsy's bride will hire for procuration or 
murder; but the slightest tamper with her chastity starts out 
the gleaming steel of resentment and revenge. 

Why then should this great proportion of society be denied 
the benefit of a legal sanction for that which is obviously de- 
manded by every consideration of morals, public order, and 
private happiness? 

For them it is required as an act of sheer justice and policy; 
but for the first-named class, this restriction leads directly to the 
most cruel and pernicious consequences. 

Let those who stand take heed lest they fall. Judge not lest 
ye be judged. There is no passion or propensity so strong as 
the spirit of reciprocal approximation. 

There never was a man or woman at maturity and in health 
with unengaged affections, with the heart open and without 
being occupied by some latent preference, who held the power 
to repel the secret influences of this overwhelming and invin- 
cible impulse. 


It is as elevated as it is instinctive; as pure as it is ungovern- 

It has no fault; no thought of wrong. 

It is the first innocent throb of the matured soul. 

It is the mysterious essence of consecrated affinity, and loathes 
an unsanctified consummation. 

Is this speculation wronger se? 

If it is so, then nature is wrong; for it has ordained this 
inevitable catastrophe per se; and all mankind practically ac- 
knowledge, however they may theoretically deny, its truth. 

Ecclesiastics may fulminate their censures, and disgusting 
crim. con. suits may be pushed upon the courts; but the law, 
although it scowls in mimic wrath, smites not the absconding 
wife or husband. 

Nor has public prejudice ever fallen on the issue of those 
unmarried. When they are appropriately trained and educated, 
they enjoy the full and generous countenance of society. 

Such children rarely turn out badly. They generally take 
rank, and are distinguished for a high order of mind and refine- 

"The lot of the unfortunate Ishmael and his unoffending 
mother have always been to me peculiarly interesting. An 
infant expelled his father's house for no offence, thrown under 
a tree to starve, the victim of an old man's dotage and a terma- 
gant's jealousy. God forgive the wicked thought (if it be 
wicked)! but, speaking in a temporal sense, and knowing the 
histories of the two families, I would rather be the outcast 
Ishmael than the pampered Isaac, the father of the favored 
people of God. I know not what divines may see, but I see 
nothing contrary to the Divine attributes in supposing, that when 
in the one, God thought proper to give a grand example of mercy 
and benevolence, he should think proper to give in the other a 
grand example of retributive justice. The descendants of the 
pampered Isaac have known little but misery, have become a 
byword of contempt, the slaves of slaves : but the descendants 
of the outcast Ishmael, in their healthy country, proverbial for 
its luxury and happiness (Felix?}, have walked with heads erect. 
The world has bowed beneath their yoke, or trembled at their 
name; but they never have either bowed or trembled, and I 
hope and trust they never will" — Godfrey Higgins's Celtic 
Druids, p. 68. 

There are no metaphysical postulates, no earthly power that 


can change or restrain this fructiferous and invincible instinct 
of human nature. 

These great fundamental laws of reason are written upon the 
hearts of all men ; and, however the blind and sullen spirit of 
prejudice and oppression may strive to force down the natural 
and unavoidable repugnances of married persons against their 
wills, society at large withholds its countenance and yields its 
free sympathies for honorable freedom and nature's rational 

They judge their fellow-creatures by their motives and not 
by false standards. 

If they see their neighbors industrious, honest, and respect- 
able, they accord to them the boon of pure intentions; and 
waste not their time or their tempers with slander and gossip. 

No objection can be raised against the proposed reformation, 
upon the ground that the characters of the parties would suffer 
by conventional or compulsory separation. 

For crimes it may now be had. Causes such as settled aver- 
sion and those before referred to being included, no injustice is 
done. The record will advertise the cause. 

If it is a fault, the delinquent will have no cause to murmur; 
and the complainant will get but an act of common justice. 

If it is for causes involving personal or mental discrepancies; 
let them be written down; they may form no objection with 
another with whom they may not be provoked. 

Physical and mental disagreements offensive to some are ac- 
ceptable and agreeable to others. 

The notion that parties may take advantage of youth and 
purity, and then cast each other off from satiety, is promptly 
answered by the character of the proposed remedy; which should 
not in any case give relief without merits. 

The parties are none the worse for former marriage. If they 
have done wrong, it is the evil they have done that harms them, 
and not the marriage. 

There is no moral impurity or personal defilement in honor- 
able marriage; however often it may have happened. 

Proper separations will leave the parties in these respects 
upon the same footing as widows or widowers. 

In a physical point of view, all experience shows men and 
women of this description to be improved and better fit for 
another marriage. 



The whole murmur upon this subject is untrue, mawkish, af- 
fected, and absurd. 

The parties are radically better in health, experience, and 
morals, than they are before they are married. 

Widows and widowers seldom fail to make advantageous and 
happy marriages. 

There is no class of society who are held in more respectful 
and favorable estimation than they are. 

Where is the difference between them and the divorced? 
They stand upon the same moral footing; one has been left 
alone by death, and is free from fault; the other has become 
single by quiet and mutual agreement; or for a cause implying 
no fault; and therefore they both stand upon the same irre- 
proachable platform. 

This, and all other remarks in this connection, are intended 
for those who are respectable and mean well ; and not for ex- 
ceptionable characters; for those, whether single by death or 
divorce, are without the pale of private or public favor. 

It is supposed that the whole material world occasionally 
suffers a gradual, imperceptible, and complete change ; that, at 
the end of certain periods of time, there is nothing left of the 
antecedent formation; and that an entire fruition has swollen 
out from the original germ. 

This theory is not disputed as to the physical, nor can it be 
as to the moral world; the reasons for both are equally strong. 

Persons do not often mature until thirty or forty. These 
developments frequently present themselves in stature, voice, 
and intellect, palpably and radically different. 

In the last century, two students of a graduating class pre- 
sented marked discrepancies of proficiency and mental power. 

One obtained the highest honor of the university amidst the 
applause and wonder of the faculty; while the other received a 
sullen direction for another year's study. 

The first lived a long life of effeminate and genteel half-cut 
idiocy; and the other for many years held a solid and dignified 
rank with the brightest ornaments and profoundest jurists of 
his country. 

These unavoidable and mysterious changes are often develop- 
ed some time after marriage; and however the affinities of the 
parties may then concur, they may afterwards be in such discord 


as to render their lives and usefulness wholly abortive; although 
both might happily furnish contributions of mutual peace and 
harmony with others. 

This position is wonderfully sustained by the fact that 
widows, and widowers, and the divorced seldom, if ever, fail to 
exhibit models of unaffected matrimonial felicity. 

Tbis occurs too, sometimes, where there are distinct natural 

Washington and Napoleon both married widows who had 
been mothers, but with them were not mothers. 

There was no discrepancy in their aifections ; no married per- 
sons were ever more mutually proud and contented. 

There was a natural disaffinity with the latter; his mental 
struggle yielded to a desire for paternity ; but this wonderful 
instinct was compromised by the former at the shrine of love; 
and he died childless. 

With the masses, mutual and take leave disruptions are made 
without ceremony; and with acknowledged advantage to the 
parties and the public. 

If this practice, under proper regulations, was sanctioned by 
law, the benefits of marriage would be largely increased. 

To the better classes of society the result would be immea- 
surably beneficial. 

There would then be with husbands desirous to live with their 
wives stronger inducements to avoid careless behavior; more 
kindness and fidelity; and with such wives more forbearance 
and accommodation; and less rebellion, disobedience, and 

There would be no prostitution ; for both parties, conscious 
of its odium, would insist upon marriage ; and however often 
it might be dissolved, this stigma would never blot the female 

It is an awful calamity, which sweeps millions of helpless 
and confiding females to an infamous grave; from which they 
would, in mercy, thus be spared. 

There would then be no spurious issue from promiscuous 
connections, to perish by famine and infanticide; no homo in- 

All would be married or single ; without shame to look at 
others, or cause of shame to be looked upon ; and clandestine 
elopements and incestuous seductions would be for ever 


Where there are disagreements under the present system, the 
parties resisting separation are never influenced by serious or 
sincere motives. 

They talk and prate of religion, law, and lawful wedded rights; 
but they are not entitled to, nor do they obtain, any credit for 
their affectation of conjugal duty. 

True pride, delicacy, honor, and religion intuitively shrink 
from such gross hypocrisy, seek retirement, and prefer mutual 
and quiet concessions. 

The secret impulses of their hearts are anger, revenge, vexa- 
tion, selfishness, chagrin, bitterness, cold and venal lust for 

There is no mournful sorrow in their souls ; it is mean and 
sordid speculation ; they never die of grief. 

They impudently live and feed on extortion, and wither away 
by abstinence and bile. 

They have no charity; no liberal emotions; they are sulky, 
sullen, and wholly selfish. 

They are not bashful or timid ; entertain no feelings of re- 
ciprocal duty; no compunctions of shame or remorse. 

The world should know that marriage contracts are nothing but 
plain up and down bargains, in which the private motives of the 
parties are often kept in profound secrecy; that, however bland, 
soft, and loving they are, each one has secret thoughts and ob- 
jects that no earthly temptation could induce them to disclose 
to each other. 

Marriage, with all its charms and simplicities, is, in some 
measure, naturally and necessarily sinister. Millions marry 
with secrets they would shudder to tell, and never do make 
known; the concealment of which is honest and proper; and 
the disclosure of which would be rude, in bad taste, and de- 
structive of all the sweets of conjugal felicity. 

With woman it is best explained in the literal verification of 
the frank avowal that "I loved him because he first loved inc." 
# When both are warmed by this rich and holy joy, the affec- 
tions being mutual, and their contributions reciprocal, marriage 
is a priceless boon. No earthly pleasure can equal its exquisite 
rapture. Its pure and ecstatic fruitions can only be compared 
to the seraphic participations of heavenly bliss. 

Without this mutual sentiment, this unction, this true and 
genuine love, it is a sanctioned but fleeting sensuality. 


A bare glance at the infidelity, hatred, hypocrisy, treachery, 
impurities, oppression, and brutal violence with the badly mated 
and unfitted world is revolting. 

Its abuse gives rise to a larger amount of disgusting scandal 
in one year than could come in an age from a wise, and discreet, 
and legal accommodation for past-nuptial disputes. 

The impetuous and impregnable affinities of nature precipi- 
tate the sexes blindfold into promiscuous marriage; from the 
bewildering ecstasies of which, too often, they waken up amidst 
the most insupportable mental, moral, and physical disaffini- 
ties and inconsistencies; without the least chance for assimila- 
tion or concord. 

For life they are tortured by impatience, provoked by des- 
peration, and urged by fierce temptations to shifts, subterfuges, 
and deceptions, more revolting to themselves than their worst 
delinquencies are obnoxious to morality. 

The arbitrary and gossiping condemnation of public scandal, 
the despotic denial of relief, and the constant dread and terror 
to which they are condemned, occasion nearly all the secret 
licentiousness prevalent with that portion of the world in this 
dilemma, who otherwise would be useful to society, and who sin- 
cerely wish to be respectable. 

All other classes are outside of the occasions for the redress 
here invoked. They accommodate their caprice and self-will as 
their propensities impel them. They do not ask for or want 
moral sympathy or legal aid. 

It is for those who honestly wish to be respectable, and by 
accident, indiscretion, or fraud, are thus embarrassed, that this 
appeal is made. 

No excuse or encouragement should be given, nor should any 
relaxation be allowed, for a faithful and rigid obedience to ail 
the duties of mutual and reciprocal forbearance, self-denial, 
fidelity, and good faith hereinbefore recited. 

Under no subterfuges should the married suffer themselves 
to indulge in personal, sinister, or private thoughts, astray from 
each other. Every jot of their whole souls should be freely, 
fully, truly, and honestly laid open to each other. 

The present system goes upon the ground that there is no oc- 
casion for divorces but for the causes named by law; and that 
the parties should not be allowed in any case to divorce them- 
selves, although they are authorized to marry themselves. 

It is obvious that the first proposition is as absurd as it is 


false, for every other contract can be abrogated by the parties 
to it ; and legislatures constantly grant divorces ex parte for any 
cause they choose to recognize, though it be not named in their 

Why not pass a law authorizing the courts to grant divorces 
in all the cases already now provided for, including those here- 
inbefore named and referred to, and in all other cases where 
sufficient cause is shown ? 

The courts are much more competent to conduct and pass 
upon these delicate and local cases than legislators; great ex- 
posure and expense would be avoided, and numerous frauds, 
corruptions, and perjuries would be prevented. 

The courts now hold exclusive jurisdiction of life, liberty, 
and property, and why should this most proper and appropriate 
power be withheld from them ? 

If they held it, a code of wise and judicious law and practice 
could be established on this subject that would afford ample 
protection to the timid and helpless, prevent oppression and 
fraud, and abundantly redress all occasions and causes for the 
mutual or compulsory revocation of marriage. 

The law, as it now stands, is inhuman, cruel, and unnatural. 
It was dictated by the ignorant bigotry and brutal despotism 
of the Dark Ages. It is without reason, right, or mercy, an in- 
centive to fraud, extortion, seduction, adultery, and murder, 
and a burning reproach upon the moral sense and intelligence 
of civilized man. 



Tale ofthe American Revolution — Tories — Refugees — TheWhigs — Mount- 
ain Blues — Declaration of Independence — Perth Amboy — A law-suit — 
Prejudices— Sympathy— Surprise— Thomas McKean— Signers ofthe De- 
claration of Independence — Their number — Education — Ages — Length 
of life, &c. 

"When the impulses and prejudices obtain possession of the 
mind, right or wrong, they become inflexible; and if they are 
sanctioned by the convictions of justice, their dominion is 

Religion and politics, in all times, have furnished wide 
spheres of action for these invincible propensities of the human 

At the breaking out of the American Revolution, there was, 
with the people of the provinces, a concurrence of favorable 
circumstances, happily without any strong countervailing influ- 
ence, making an occasion for the enterprise such as never oc- 
curred before then; and such as, perhaps, will not again happen. 

The great mass of the people were men of education, industry, 
and piety. 

They had left their fatherland under the pressure of insuffer- 
able wrongs. Their spirit of rebellion had been cherished for 
generations, and carefully infused into the minds of their sturdy 
and independent offspriug. 

Their compact was so thorough and firm, that their invaders 
would have gained small advantages, and the war would have 
been brief, but for the minions of loyalty, and the swarms of 
Tories and Shylocks with which the country was filled. 

The vindication of their cause was straightforward, sensibly 
expressed, and intelligibly explained. It was fully understood, 
and heartily espoused, by every member of their party. 

They were all in earnest, and could not see, how the truth 
and justice of their doctrines could be drawn in question. They 


denied their enemies all credit for sincerity, and openly im- 
pugned the integrity of their motives. 

There never was a more distinct and explicit explanation of 
facts and reasons than those set out by the Declaration of Inde- 

They peremptorily denied that there was any room left for 
speculation or argument. 

They openly debated their resolutions for resistance and free- 
dom; and vehemently denounced and repudiated all monarchi- 
cal, feudal, and ecclesiastical oppression. 

They felt that the soil was their own, and that God had or- 
dained that they should be free. 

It is not difficult, therefore, to conceive the scorn and disdain 
in which they held the puppets and spies who watched and be- 
trayed them ; the heartless wretches, who speculated upon their 
wants, and facilitated the refugees in their robbery and murder. 

A long series of years of unutterable wrongs inspired them 
with deadly hatred to their enemies, and cemented them to each 
other in undying faith. 

Their overwhelming and predominating sympathies swept 
everything before them, like the angry billows of the ocean. 

During the whole period of the Revolution, and for many 
years succeeding its close, there was a combination of causes, 
which called into action their most superhuman efforts, and 
imposed constraints and self-denials most imperious and pro- 

They were all politicians, statesmen, teamsters, and soldiers. 
They knew the essential importance of the undivided energy 
and exertions of each man. There was no intrigue for office; 
every one solemnly felt that the public safety depended upon, 
and imperiously demanded, that the very best men should be 
selected for every trust. 

Those who were immediately dependent on the patronage of 
the crown, very soon after the war broke out, returned home ; 
but the daring and sordid adventurers and Tories remained, to 
embrace the chances for gain and plunder always afforded by 
troubled and contraband trade. 

The stringent markets, and urgent demands for money, opened 
a wide door for extortion and usury. 

The public necessities required a relaxed exercise of policies ; 
and those who ran with the hounds, and held with the game, 
controlled the entire traffic of the country. 


In Congress, in the army, and in all the public and private 
departments of the country, the Whigs were chafed and baffled 
by their impudent exactions. The more imminent the crisis, 
the more audacious and grinding their extortions. 

Credit and personal security were banished. Almost all the 
lands, cattle, and other property, under the pinching urgencies 
of the times, was in peril of being passed for nominal con- 
siderations, in some form, into the possession of the Tories and 

Their marauding was done in disguise, as Indians and negroes; 
while they maintained the outward profession of peace and cir- 

Detections were difficult, and prosecutions dangerous. The 
public exigencies required that none should be punished but 
open belligerents; and, after the peace, a spirit of amnesty 
seemed to be called for, by the benignant professions of the new 
government, and the manifest want of the people for quiet and 
tranquillity. They were disgusted with shooting and gibbets. 

Notwithstanding these indemnities, the flagitious frauds and 
plots of the Tories sometimes exposed them to imminent per- 
sonal danger. 

Courts and juries could scarcely be restrained from an open 
denial of law, when these obnoxious scoundrels were parties 

Thousands of stale claims upon deeds and contracts, extorted 
by pressing want, duress, and imprisonment, were sued out; 
and the dockets were loaded down with ejectments and mortgage 
suits, for the best lands in the country. 

These miscreants would coolly take their seats in court, and 
impudently demand from the judges and jury, whom they had 
wronged and persecuted during the whole war, an impartial and 
unflinching validation of their infamous contracts. 

A scoundrel and a murderer, who had held covert intercourse 
with, and fed and sheltered the enemy, and showed them where 
and whom to rob and burn; personally known in all these 
atrocities, by the tribunal trying his cause; and also known to 
have obtained his writing in issue for a dollar or a pound, from 
a starving soldier of Washington's army, now demanded the 
penalty of his accursed bond. 

Was it strange that these insulted and indignant patriots 
should sometimes revolt from these profane and loathing func- 



No men were ever required to do their duty under circum- 
stances of such unmitigated, heart-rending chagrin and vexation. 

One of these noble, unwavering, and sturdy patriots of liberty, 
who had everywhere during this long and doubtful struggle re- 
solutely dedicated his life and great talents for his country's 
redemption, after the peace became Chief Justice of the Supreme 
Court of Pennsylvania. He was a jurist of the highest order. 

In this connection, a brief sketch of an interesting trial, which 
came before this judge, will perhaps give some illustrations of 
the extent and character of the excitements referred to. 

An eminent lawyer was called on to bring an action of eject- 
ment for a young man who had been some twenty years covered 
up in the ruins of the Revolution. 

The extent of the land was great, and it had increased in 
value. The present occupants supposed their title to be good 
by time. A fierce and obstinate resistance would be made. 
And all the prejudices against stale and unpopular claims 
against the peaceable holders of improved lands would have 
to be encountered. 

They had been so frequently made by Tories, ostensibly for 
the use of meritorious Whig families, and their descendants, and 
so many frauds had been thus perpetrated, that all these ac- 
tions had now come to be identified with unqualified suspicion 
and hatred. 

The preparation in this case was tedious. The plaintiff had 
but one witness to prove that his father, from whom he claimed 
descent, died within twenty-one years. It was known how 
readily a pretext could be made to question the sufficiency of 
one witness to a fact of so much importance as a point of time, 
about which all human memory is supposed to be uncertain and 

Great efforts were made to discover some corroborating fact, 
by a public event, that might have occurred at the same period. 
At length it was ascertained that the death of one of the par- 
ties happened at the time, and under the notice of, a distin- 
guished individual, so as to give to the occasion many interest- 
ing confirmatory tendencies. 

The action was brought; the trial came on; the jury were 
sworn; the crowd and the excitement were great. The case 
was opened by the cautious and experienced counsel for the 
plaintiff, quietly and without the least display or boast. 

He stated the facts ; gave no reason for the delay in bringing 


the suit; avoided all reference to the difficulties of his case; and 
stated that a plea of the statute of limitations had been put in 
by the defendants; which would be met by proof that the 
plaintiff's father died within twenty-one years, seized of the 
lands in question. 

lie then read in evidence certified copies of the paper title, 
from the original proprietary grants, down to the plaintiff's 
father; and called the Register of Wills of the county, who tes- 
tified that no will of the plaintiff's father had been proved in, 
or could be found in, his office; and that no letters of adminis- 
tration had been granted to his estate. 

The witness was then turned over to the defendants for cross- 

Question. — "Do you know, sir, this plaintiff?" 

Answer. — " No, sir : I never saw or heard of him before this 
suit was brought." 

Question. — "Do you know his name, or who his father was, 
or where he came from?" 

Answer. — "No, sir — I know nothing of them." 

Question. — "Do you know any one that ever did know cither 
of them?" 

Answer. — "No, sir; I have taken uncommon pains to in- 
quire; I can find no one who ever heard of thcru. When this 
suit was brought, it produced universal alarm. We have hunted 
high and low, but cannot find out who they are. Nobody knows 
where this plaintiff comes from; he won't tell anybody; and 
when we ask Mr. Duncan, he says it will all be satisfactorily 
explained on the trial." 

Defendants' Counsel (in an under tone) — " I guess it will 
puzzle them to make it out." 

Plaintiff's Attorney to Defendant's Counsel. — "Have you 
finished your cross-examination of the Register, sir ?" 

Defendants' Attorney. — "Yes, sir, we have." (And to the 
court) — " Now, may it please your honor, we beg leave to call 
upon the court to direct the plaintiff to explain now who he is; 
where he comes from; and what he had to do with the grantee 
last named." 

Plaintiff's Attorney (to the court). — "Why, sir, upon the 
pleadings there are set forth all the legal requisites, or the learned 
counsel for the defendants would have demurred to the declara- 

" If they will be patient, they shall in due time have all the 


particulars; and if we fail to prove them, they will defeat the 

" I did not open the particulars, because I was not required 
to do so; and I decline now, as I have before done, to my 
learned adversaries, to name more than they have heard. 

"I have good reasons for this, which will very soon be dis- 
closed. I therefore ask leave to proceed, and respectfully beg 
leave to request that the court will not suffer me to be again 
interrupted by the restless impatience and irritation of the de- 
fendants and their counsel. 

"There is an obvious and very general feeling of distrust 
and suspicion which the plaintiff has to encounter. But I take 
leave to say in advance, that, before this day has closed in, no 
accidents intervening, the tide of public excitement will have 
run down to its lowest ebb; and that the current of just sym- 
pathy will flow back with an overwhelming flood." 

Judge Qo Plaintiff's Attorney). — "Proceed, sir; when there 
is anything offered, if objected to, I will hear it; there is no 
formal objection before me now. 

" This case is, like all others, to be tried by the pleadings and 
the law; no special requirements can be demanded or enforced. 
Go on, Mr. Duncan." 

Mr. Duncan then called up an infirm man with a severe 
cough. He was thin; rested upon crutches; was clean, but 
poorly clad; with a clear intellectual face and bright eye; but 
a total stranger to every one present. 

He was sworn; kissed the Bible; and asked and obta : ned 
leave to be seated. He was looked at with obtrusive scrutiny 
and manifest suspicion. The plaintiff's counsel then examined 
him as follows: — 

Question. — "What is your name, sir?" 

Answer. — "My name is Frederick Shaffer." 

Question. — "How old are you?" 

Answer. — " I am forty years old." 

Question. — " Where were you born ?" 

Answer. — "I was born in the mountain back here." 

Question. — "Do you know the plaintiff, Jacob Widener?" 

Answer. — "Yes — I have known him ever since he was born; 
— we are from one mother." 

Question. — " Then you knew his father?" 

Answer. — "Yes, I knew him; his name was Jacob too." 

Question. — "Is he dead?" 


A nswer. — " Yes, he is dead : he died twenty years ago last 
February; I saw him die, and buried him." 

Question. — " How old was his son Jacob then V 

Answer. — "He was a little boy then, about three years old." 

Question. — " Where was Jacob the plaintiff here born ?" 

Answer. — "He was born on the stone-mill place, on the big 
tract, this side of the little bottom. The house was burned 
down that winter." 

Ques. — " Do you know of anything else that happened when 
the old man died ? Have you any reason to give why you know 
it was twenty years ago last February? If so, state the 

" Stop, witness ! — do not answer that question yet," said the 
defendant's attorney. 

" Will your honor allow us to inquire if this is not irregular ; 
if it is usual or legitimate for a party to fortify the supposed 
impeachment of his witness before he is attacked ?" 

Judge. — " I think not ; this would seem to be premature ; 
perhaps it will come in on cross-examination." 

Plaintiff's Attorney. — "But suppose the defendants decline 
a cross-examination?" 

Judge. — " Then your fact is proved, and if they do not im- 
peach your witness, his evidence will be conclusive ; and if they 
do, then you can rebut by repeating this question." 

Plaintiff's Attorney. — " I beg leave to except to this de- 

Judge. — "I will note your exception. My present impres- 
sion is that I am right ; but I will take care that your case 
does not suffer by it. I suppose the defendants may now cross- 
examine the witness." 

Defendants' Attorney. — " No, sir : we decline ; his appear- 
ance is enough. No man present believes a word he says. I 
should like to know where he came from ; out of what prison 
or almshouse they have scraped up an old vagabond like this." 

Plaintiff's Attorney. — " Now, may it please the court, it is 
manifest that this case is to suffer, if no modification of your 
honor's decision is made. If it is wrong, it cannot be corrected 
on error, perhaps, for two or three years, and then the plaintiff 
may have no witness. 

" If it is correct, then we are at the mercy of the jury. For, 
however wc have technically proved our case, the jury have 
the power to disbelieve the uncorroborated and unexplained 



testimony of a single witness, an utter stranger to them, and 
the plaintiff is then without remedy. 

" I do not cavil with your honor's decision, but I respect- 
fully ask you now to see that this peril shall not be thrown 
upon our path, and that the defendants shall be deprived of the 
power to shut out this explanation : and then, for lack of the 
solution, to repudiate, and charge the witness with infamy and 

" I, therefore, beg leave to ask the court itself to support the 
source of this evidence, as your honor or the jury would in- 
spect a bond upon which a slur was cast. 

" Our witness is openly denounced, and, at first blush, con- 
demned as a renegade, whom no one believes; let the court 
and jury scrutinize him. 

" If it is so, then there is no harm done; if it is not so, let 
the truth come out. Certainly it would be unmanly to shut 
it out by a mere exception to the form of examination, and by 
a fiV refusal of the defendants to cross-examine ; and then to 
suffer the defendants, in mere wrath, to blast the witness upon 
naked suspicion. 

"This is rank injustice: and I confidently call upon the 
court to see that my case shall not suffer by it." 

Judge. — " I think this is fair." 

Defendants' Attorney. — " Will the court suffer us to remark 
that the ground of our objection applies, we respectfully submit, 
to all inquiries for irrelevant matter, not for explanations of 
what the witness has said? That would be pertinent; but after 
new matter. 

"For example: The supposed existence of the witness's 
want of credibility. 

"Now, suppose, sir, when the case is closed, we should press 
upon the jury the danger, in any case, to rely upon evidence 
so weak, unsatisfactory, uncertain, and uncorroborated as this 
is. This will not alter the rule ; the jury will be bound to dis- 
regard our argument, and validate the evidence, if they believe 
it ; or they might reject it, if it was ever so well sustained, 
and their verdict would be final. 

"Sir, we deny that there is any justice without law; that 
the law is with us as you have held it ; and we protest against 
the pernicious and alarming consequences of swerving from the 
straightforward path of duty to accommodate the supposed hard- 
ships of any case." 


Judge. — " I do not think that the reasoning of the defend- 
ants' counsel goes to the bottom of the point. 

" He contends that no examination can be made for expla- 
nation of what the witness has said. 

" I think we may go one step further. That the evidence 
of a witness is liable to the same inspection by the court and 
jury, to satisfy their consciences, as is a deed, a record, a 
book, or any other thing put in evidence. 

" And we have a right to employ the most rigid scrutiny, to 
see that we are not imposed upon by forgeries and falsehoods 
on one side: and on the other side, that the evidence which, 
from a superficial and hasty examination at first view, may ap- 
pear to be too weak and feeble, realhj has the elements of legiti- 
mate strength and certainty. I think there is no difference in 
the application of this rule as to evidence from the mouth of a 
witness, or that which is put in by a bond. 

" We do not want anything the witness has said explained ; 
there is no ambiguity in "what he has said ; it is all plain and 
intelligible. But we want to examine the integrity and true 
source of this evidence. 

" Suppose it was a plain bond ; we should not want it ex- 
plained, it would speak for itself. In this case, it is a witness, 
and he speaks out a fact. We do not want the fact explained : 
it speaks for itself. 

" But, perhaps, we may want to examine the validity of the 
source of the fact. 

" If it was a bond, and the defendants should assert that the 
bond was a forgery, this would naturally excite suspicion, 
and the jury might examine the water date of the papermaker, 
to find if his date was before or after the date of the writing. 
Both have been done. 

" Well, suppose the jury suspect the witness, and compare 
the witness's time of old Mr. Widener's death with the date he 
may give of any current event. 

" If the dates correspond or disagree, this would go to con- 
firm or weaken the source of the testimony ; not to explain, but 
to test the evidence itself. 

" The evidence may mislead, but the test cannot mislead. 

" It is in this view that I hold the court bound to test the 
evidence, especially as the plaintiff challenges, and the defend- 
ants refuse to try the test, and avow their intention to make 
this objection. 


" I will examine the witness myself." 

Ques. — " Mr. Shaffer, how old are you ?" 

J m: — "I was nineteen when the Blues went; that was six 
months before father died, and he has been dead twenty-and-a- 
half years; that makes me forty." 

Ques. — " You look older than that." 

A. — " Well, sir, I feel very old. It is a wonder I am alive, 
I have suffered so much. I was shot at the plains, and the 
bullet is here in my breast now. 

" I have been ever since in the incurable ward till last 
winter Jacob took me up to Yonkers, where I have had beauti- 
ful quarters. 

" He could do no better. He came every Sunday, if it did 
not rain, to see me ; and always brought me something good to 
cat ; and so we were alone in the world, as it were. 

" But we felt strong : for we used to read the Bible, and 
pray ; and this always kept us from drooping." 

Defendants Attorney. — " Does your honor think that these 
private exercises of the witness have anything to do with the 
issue before the court and jury?" 

Plaintiffs' Attorney. — " I think, sir (to the court), they have 
very much to do with the credibility of the witness, and that 
I understand to be the object of the present inquiry." 

Defendants Attorney. — " Yes; but may it please the court, 
are the defendants' rights to be put in jeopardy by the sympa- 
thies sought to be invoked by the melancholy tale of this old 

Judge. — " My friend, it is in bad taste, I think, to refer to 
any man's poverty by way of reproach. The difficulty I have 
upon the trial of this case is to avoid the prejudice we all 
have, I suppose, against stale claims. 

" But, if their delay in this case has been occasioned by una- 
voidable calamities, it becomes a case of commiseration, and not 

" The door has been opened now too wide ; it must not be 
closed until we have had this interesting vicissitude fully ex- 

" It is one of a million that have happened during the Revo- 

"J hope so, sir," said a juror. 

Witness. — "Judge, may I ask that man who just spoke if he 
is not the fuller's boy, Peter ? I thought it was his voice. 


" If it is he, he was going with the company ; but the 
doctor said he was too sick with the ague." 

"Yes," answered the juror, "my name is Peter Wright; I 
am the fuller's boy. Why, Frederic, is that you? We thought 
you were all dead." 

Witness. — " Well, so they are all dead, Peter, but the child 
and me. Judge, shall I go on ?" 

Judge. — "Yes, go on, sir; take your own time; rest when 
you are tired, or your cough interrupts you. (To the crier.) 
Set a tumbler of water there for the witness. Go on, sir, and 
tell the whole story in your own way." 

Witness. — "Then I will begin, and tell it all; that will be 
best. I thought I was only to answer questions. 

"Well, when my father, Frederick Shaffer, was sheriff, he 
raised the Blues, before I was born, for the French War ; but 
it blowed over; and the company died off, and then father died; 
and mother, in two or three years, married again, Squire Jacob 
Widener, Jacob's father; and when Jacob was about two years 
old, the English war come ; and the Tories and refugees used 
to come up in the night, all the way from the Old Bottom, and 
rob and kill the women and children, and burn the barns and 
houses ; for the men were almost all gone to the war. 

" And mother got out the old muster-roll of the Blues, and 
none of the men were left but the squire; and he and mother 
said, ' Let us fill up the roll with boys ;' and mother went all 
round, and told the women it would be no worse ; to send the 
boys to them with warm clothes ; that she would go, and stay 
with them to the last. 

" And the boys come, and they made the squire captain, and 
me first lieutenant. 

" There was seventy-three of us ; and mother and the two 
babies made seventy-six ; and they called us the seventy-sixers. 
And we all marched off to the sound of the bugle, and give it 
back to the refugees hard. 

" We were three days going, and it took us a week ; but we 
shot every scoundrel ; cleared the Old Bottom for them, and 
did not lose a man. 

" Thousands of our things they had stolen, we found, and 
brought back ; horses, cows, silver spoons, clothing, and store- 
goods. We could not bring half back. 

" We did not hurt a woman or child, and we left them full 
and plenty. 


" We came home to the mountain in triumph ; staid a week; 
encouraged the women ; and mother and all of us started for 
the army. 

"Our company was on a scout; and then the first hard 
knocks came. It was just peep of day ; we were all up. 

" If we had heen asleep, they would have killed us all, for 
they were thirteen hundred strong, and had nineteen cannon. 
But we flew to the bushes, and dodged them. Every bullet 
hit ; we brought down two hundred and seventeen. 

" They were scared to death, and yelled, and run like wild 
Indians. We screeched, too, and chased them a mile or two 
through the woods. 

"They thought we were a whole army; but it would not do 
to make a show ; so, when we come to the clear, we shouted, 
and fired a volley ; and they kept on like wildfire. 

"We come back, spiked their guns, and had thousands of 
booty;, but it was hard got. We lost thirty-one, and father 
was shot dead. 

" I got a bullet in my side ; and here it is now. This was 
on the twenty-second of February, twenty years ago last winter. 
I was made captain ; but it was all over. We were sadly hurt 
and cut up. 

" The weather was now cold ; we went into winter quarters 
at Old Perth Amboy. 

" The camp-fever broke out, and we suffered dreadfully ; all 
of us died but mother, and Jacob here, and I. Our hospital was 
up stairs in the old red store, down under the hill, along side 
of the water opposite Biddle's Ferry, on Staten Island. 

" At last mother took sick ; she was worn down. She stood 
it out till the baby died; and then she seemed to droop like, 
and give up. 

" The colonel came every day to see us ; he staid a good 
deal, and helped us to nurse mother all night. But she died; 
and the colonel and I led Jacob here to the grave; and when 
it was filled up, he took Jacob up in his arms, and kissed him, 
and told him not to cry so. He wiped his eyes with his pocket- 
handkerchief, and said, ' Here, my dear boy — keep it ;' and 
the colonel kissed him again, and handed him to me, and gave 
him a guinea, and shook hands with us both, and said, 'God 
bless you !' And he went away crying, for he could not help it. 

" And I never saw him again; for I was taken worse; and 
the invalids were all removed to New York. I got very ill ; 


while I was so low, I knowed nothing. They took us to the 
almshouse ; but we were warmer and better off there than 
in the barracks; and so I did not inquire or stir it up; for I 
expected to die. 

"And in two or three years they bound Jakey to the milk- 
woman, and then I was lonesome. 

"I wrote to the colonel at Philadelphia, to see if I could not 
get a pension ; and he wrote me back a very kind letter, and 
sent me a newspaper; and said, in the letter, that no provision 
had yet been made for volunteers ; that he hoped there would 
be ; that he was doing all he could to get Congress or Penn- 
sylvania to do something ; and that he would try to get a special 
act passed for our company. 

" He said he had hundreds of revolutionary friends as bad 
off as me ; that he helped them in every way all he could ; and 
enclosed me a draft on a man in New York for ten dollars, 
which I got, and bought the boy some flannel, and woollen 
stockings, and an overcoat; for he was weakly, and much ex- 
posed to the cold and the wet, feeding and milking the cows, 
and carrying milk. 

" And I think it saved him; for he got stronger after this ; 
so the boy growed up, and got free. 

" And I thought he had had a hard time of it. I knew this 
tract was his father's; and I thought it was as good for him as 
another; that the old mill and barn, and all the buildings, 
had been burnt down by the Tories ; for it seems we did not 
catch, at the big Bottom, that old cut-throat, Dick Watts, and 
his two wolf-boys ; for I heard, at Trenton, they come back, and 
burned up all the rest." 

" Yes, but I chased and shot all the scoundrels afterwards I" 
exclaimed Peter Wright, the juror. 

Witness. — "Well, Peter, you served them blood-hounds 
right ; for I saw old Dick pull grandfather out of the window 
by the hair, and hold him, while his boys stabbed and stamped 
him to death ; and then they throwed him into the barn, while 
it was all a fire. 

" Well, the colonel said, ' God bless us !' and we were blessed ; 
for the boy has lived to get this old homestead. 

" The land is his now for sure, and if they have improved it, 
Mr. Duncan says, they will be allowed fair for that, if all is 


" But I have not told near all yet j and I am very tired, I 
cough so. 

" Won't the judge let Jakey take me out a little bit, and let 
somebody go with us ; for certainly I am afraid of the Tories." 

" Constable!" said the judge ; " go along, no one will harm 
you, sir." 

And if poor Captain Shaffer had been General Washington, 
the crowd could not have made him room to pass by, with sen- 
sations of more profound regard. 

The tide had run down, and now there was a strong flood 
making back. 

The court was then adjourned until 3 P. M. 

And then a mournful respite was given to the painful excite- 
ment of the anxious and eager crowd. 

Where now had gone all the dry and logical speculations of 
the defendants' counsel about abstract rules of practice, and 
the majesty of theoretical justice ? 

It so happened that sympathy lay in the right scale ; but 
the abstraction, the right of the question, constituted no part 
of the preponderance. 

It was impulse, prejudice, passion; in which law and reason 
took no part, except by forms, to give them appropriate and 
legal sanction. 

What must have been the proud sensation of triumph which 
filled the throbbing bosom of this patriot colonel, on whom every 
eye fell, as the witness, with pure and artless simplicity, 
revealed the touching occasions of his humanity and benevo- 
lence ! 

The plaintiff and his witness were the only persons in that 
court room ignorant of the benignant and judicial presence of 
him who made these holy benefactions at their mother's grave. 

Of this precious truth they were still in darkness j and for 
the whether or not they held the sacred trophies of that mourn- 
ful day, as if by miracle, to ratify their solemn tragedy, eager 
and impatient speculation was now going wild. 

No plodding learner ever found the literal hang of foreign 
speech ; nor can the tongue or pen stir up, and kindle into 
white transparent heat, the holy fire that Heaven alone did 
light in every patriot's soul of '76. 

Who e'er did see their eyes flash fire, their bosoms heave 
with wrath, and mark their clenched fists, and grinding, frothing 


mouths, without a freezing shudder, as of their brutal wrongs 
they revelation made? 

Or who in rapturous transports did not swell to hear their 
thrilling peals of eloquence, and glorious shouts of holy triumph, 
when, ever and anon, bright memory changed the drama of their 
burning souls from fire and death to liberty and life ? 

That eager, restless crowd, wrapt up with anxious hope and 
trembling fear, scattered and grouped about, and restless, bore 
the painful recess of the court. 

Their numbers magnified ; and with traditions black, and 
gloomy legends of rapine, fire, and murder, freshened up, and 
oft by turns most eloquently rehearsed, each did stare and gaze 
upon the other, in vacant wonder and bewildered awe. 

No gluttony or bibbing then was there; but all was gloom 
and solemn waiting. 

At length the court house bell shot off upon the impatient 
breeze its loud and cutting peals. 

The court was opened ; the house emphatically and literally 
packed; and all was breathless silence. 

The jury was called, and the court directed the witness to 

Witness. — " Well, then, I told the boy all about it; and he 
saved up his wages, and come on here, and found out Mr. Dun- 
can ; who told him the troubles we should have, and the risk 
of our lives we should run, if it was not all kept quiet. 

" Mr. Duncan came to me at Yonkers, with the boy, and he 
staid there two or three days, to cross-question me as it were. 

"And we did not tell him about the handkerchief; nor the 
guinea; nor the newspaper, nor the colonel's letter. For, after 
he said there was danger, I was afraid they would assassinate 

"I had been so crushed down, I had lost all my heart, and 
was afraid of everything; but I told him all the rest; and 
I kept these things to myself, because I have been told that 
these old Tories and their children are secretly scattered all over 
yet; and I know they will steal and murder, just as soon now 
as they did then. 

" Like enough some of them are sneaking about here now; 
but the boy and me are armed, and ready for them. 

" Well, I have told all; and now if I do not show the news- 
paper, nor the colonel's letter, nor the handkerchief, nor the 


gold bit, this gentleman here, perhaps, would say I was really 
scraped up, and that I had made the story; hut it is all true. 

" Well, here is the newspaper. It come with this cover on 
it; and the handwriting of the direction is the same as the 
colonel's letter. 

" The paper has in it the Colonel's report about his detach- 
ment, published by order of Congress." 

Judge. — " Hand it up to me, Captain Shaffer, if you please." 

Witness. — " Now you said, Judge, I should tell my story in 
my own way ; I have something more to say; and,, if I give you 
the paper now, you will begin to look at it, and you won't listen 
so attentively to the rest." 

Judge. — " Go on, captain. Indeed you shall have your own 
way, and you shall not be interrupted again. I beg your par- 
don, sir; go on." 

Witness. — "Well, that is what the newspaper says; and it 
gives all our names, and mother's death; and it has the Phila- 
delphia post-mark on it, and the date. 

" And there is the colonel's letter, that has the same post- 
mark, and the date on it. 

" Now, the colonel is not here, or he would prove his hand- 
writing; but I will swear to it; for he signed the Declaration 
of Independence; and when we went through Philadelphia, we 
all went and saw that parchment, and I am sure it is the same 

" And there is enough, I suppose, too, that knows it. 

" If I had known Peter was here, I would have asked him 
what had gone of the colonel." 

Peter Wright. — "Never mind, Frederick; you go on; you 
will find out pretty soon where the colonel is, I guess." 

Witness. — " I wish he was here to snub that man for abusing 
me so. I never did anything bad; and all the time I was in 
the almshouse, and I could not help that, nobody ever called 
me such hard names. 

" But I do not care. Jakey will take care of me now; and I 
shall not die in the almshouse, I hope. 

" But there is the writing of the colonel; and he did sign 
the Declaration, and worked hard to get it signed by enough ; 
and if it had not been signed then, maybe it would never have 
been signed, and we never should have been free." 

Judge. — "No, captain, no; it never would have been 


Witness. — "Well, father Widener was there; and he and 
several took a great part for it; and when he came home he 
told us all so. He said, when it come to the pinch, no one 
would believe how some of the stoutest of them flinched. 

" That there was a time there when it was all in the hands 
of a mighty few; and the rest said, they hoped the other man 
would not come. 

" But he did come before they met the next morning ; and 
the colonel had him brought; and he and the rest stuck to it 
like fire until it was signed by enough. 

" But oh, Heavenly Father ! what the revolution has cost! 
The sorrow and murder nobody knows. 

" If all this is forgot, Glod will smite and forsake the people 
for their ingratitude. 

" Well, I said I was done, and I must not trespass upon the 
kindness of the court. 

" Somehow, I think I have heard the colonel's voice ; — the 
judge's voice reminds me of his voice. But I am not sure ; I 
never heard him speak much, but in whispers, when mother 
was sick, and at her grave. 

"I suppose he is not here; if he was, it would be a God- 

" Well, here is the newspaper, and the cover to it ; and here 
is the colonel's letter, and his handkerchief, with his name on 
it, the same signature ; and the gold bit, which I punched a 
hole through, and tied to the corner of the handkerchief. 

" I have kept them all safe. 

" There, Mr. Duncan. I beg your pardon for not telling 
you all at Yonkers ; if you think the reason I give is not good 

" You know what to do with these things; I suppose they 
will all be handed to the judge; and like enough he, and Peter 
too, knows the colonel's handwriting." 

Judge. — " Yes, yes; I can see it from here. But, Mr. Dun- 
can, hand them all up to me, if you please, 

" This is surely a most wonderful interposition of Divine 
Providence. I am overwhelmed with amazement." 

These sacred papers, and the triumphant trophies from the 
last coffin of the Mountain Blues, were handed to the judge, 
who gazed in awe, as, one by one, he ratified them all, by 
solemn pause, and mournful bowing of his venerable head. 

The letter and the Report by Congress were then read. All 


was put in evidence, and received the most searching and gene- 
ral examination. 

Scrutiny was baffled, and the doubting subdued; and all 
alike were overpowered. 

A silent, breathless pause ensued; and then, in under tones 
of voice, the parties, jury, and clerk briefly communed toge- 
ther, inaudible to the bench and buzzing crowd. 

Meantime, the judge had risen from his seat, and stood at a 
window, mutely looking out, to soothe and mellow down the 
conflict passions of his swelling soul. 

He paused awhile, and then he faced the eager audience, and 
said : — 

"I am not so proud as to disguise the effects upon my heart 
produced by the thrilling disclosures which have just been 

" They have wrought up impulses that altogether unman me. 
I will not deny that I am, at this time, wholly unfit for the fur- 
ther trial of this cause; and I think the jury are under the 
same influence. I will, therefore, adjourn the court over." 

" To try this case," was exclaimed. 

"What was it that was said ?" continued the judge; "did 
any one repeat my words?" 

"Yes," said Peter Wright; "it was I. I did not do so to 
interrupt the court ; but I thought there would be no harm in 
my informing your honor, before the crier began to proclaim 
the adjournment (for it will be impracticable to stop him), that 
while you were vainly attempting to stifle the involuntary and 
honorable emotions of your bosom at the window, the defend- 
ants honestly caved in ; for no man but a Tory, or a refugee, 
could stand this resurrection of the quick and dead, both to- 
gether: and, by their consent, our verdict has been recorded 
for the plaintiff." 

Upon which the court was adjourned. 

The crowd made way; and the sheriff's long corfege of con- 
stables, with long poles, with the arms of Pennsylvania em- 
blazoned with blue and gold upon them, escorted this tall, erect, 
and venerable apostle of the American Revolution, with cocked 
hat, powdered wig, and bag, long broad-tailed black cloth coat, 
with ruffled cravat, bosom, and cuffs, black satin vest and 
breeches, black silk stockings, and shoes with broad gold 
buckles, and a long gold-headed cane, from the court-house to 
his hotel. 


As this immense concourse slowly and solemnly moved along, 
all hearts throbbed with painful sympathy and joy. 

Proud humility, and thankfulness to Heaven, brightly beamed 
upon the noble face of him whose purity of life and constant 
works of public good proclaimed him modeled in the holy 
semblance of Almighty God. 

"Of the fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence, 
it is stated that nine were born in Massachusetts, eight in Vir- 
ginia, five in Maryland, four in Connecticut, four in New Jersey, 
four in Pennsylvania, four in South Carolina, three in New 
York, three in Delaware, two in Rhode Island, one in Maine, 
three in Ireland, two in England, two in Scotland, and one in 

" Twenty-one were attorneys, ten merchants, four physicians, 
three farmers, one clergyman, one printer, and sixteen were 
men of fortune. 

" Eight were graduates of Harvard College, four of Yale, 
three of New Jersey, two of Philadelphia, two of William and 
Mary, three of Cambridge (England), two of Edinburgh, and 
one of St. Onier's. 

" At the time of their deaths, five were over ninety years of 
age, seven between eighty and ninety, eleven between seventy 
and eighty, twelve between sixty and seventy, eleven between 
fifty and sixty, seven between forty and fifty, one died at the 
age of twenty-seven, and the age of two is uncertain. 

" At the time of signing the Declaration, the average age of 
the members was forty-four years. They lived to the average 
age of more than sixty-five years and ten months. The youngest 
member was Edward Rutledge, of South Carolina, who was in 
his twenty-seventh year. He lived to the age of fifty-one. 
The next youngest member was Thomas Lynch, of the same 
State, who was also in his twenty-seventh year. He was cast 
away at sea in the fall of 1776. 

"Benjamin Franklin was the oldest member. He was in his 
seventy-first year when he signed the Declaration. He lived 
to 1790, and survived sixteen of his younger brethren. Stephen 
Hopkins, of Rhode Island, the next oldest member, was born 
in 1707, and died in 1785. 

" Charles Carroll attained the greatest age, dying in his 
ninety-sixth year. William Ellery, of Rhode Island, died in 
his ninety-third year, and John Adams in his ninety-first. 



" He was the last survivor. ' They are now all dead' " 
" We have been particularly requested to republish the fol- 
lowing letter from the late Governor M'Kean, written but a 
short time previous to his decease." — Freeman's Journal. 


"Philadelphia, June 16th, 1817. 
"Messrs. Wm. M'Corkle and Son: 

"Gentlemen — Several applications having been recently 
made to me, to state the errors which I had observed, and often 
mentioned, in the publications of the names of the members of 
the Continental Congress, who declared in favor of the Inde- 
pendence of the United States, on the 4th of July, 1776 — I 
have not, at present, sufficient health and leisure to reply seve- 
rally to each application. There can be but one correct state- 
ment of facts : One public statement, therefore, through the 
press, will serve the purpose of the gentlemen who have made 
the request, and may also give satisfaction to the minds of 
others, who have turned their thoughts upon the subject. If 
I am correct in my statement, it may be of use to future his- 
torians; if not, my errors can be readily corrected. I wish, 
therefore, by means of your paper, to make the following state- 
ment of the facts within my knowledge, relative to the subject 
of inquiry: — 

"On Monday, the first day of July, 1776, the arguments in 
Congress for and against the Declaration of Independence, 
having been exhausted, and the measure fully considered, the 
Congress resolved itself into a committee of the whole. The 
question was put by the chairman, and all the States voted in 
the affirmative, except Pennsylvania, which was in the negative, 
and Delaware, which was equally divided. Pennsylvania, at 
that time, had seven members, viz., John Morton, Benjamin 
Franklin, James Wilson, John Dickinson, Robert Morris, 
Thomas Willing, and Charles Humphreys. All were present 
on the first of July, and the three first named voted for the 
Declaration of Independence, the remaining four against it. 
The State of Delaware had three members, Ctesar Rodney, 
George Read, and myself. George Read and I were present. 
I voted for it, George Read against it. When the President 
resumed the chair, the chairman of the committee of the whole 
made his report, which was not acted upon until Thursday, the 


4th of July. In the mean time, I had written to press the 
attention of Caesar Rodney, the third delegate from Delaware, 
who appeared early on that day at the State House, in this 
place. When the Congress assembled, the question was put 
on the report of the committee of the whole, and approved by 
every State. Of the members from Pennsylvania, the three 
first, as before, voted in the affirmative, and the two last in the 
negative. John Dickinson and Robert Morris were not present, 
and did not take their seats on that day. Caesar Rodney, for 
the State of Delaware, voted with me in the affirmative, and 
George Read in the negative. 

" Some months after this, I saw printed publications of the 
names of those gentlemen who had, as it was said, voted for 
the Declaration of Independence, and observed that my own 
name was omitted. I was not a little surprised at, nor could 
I account for the omission ; because I knew that, on the 24th 
of June preceding, the deputies from the committees of Penn- 
sylvania, assembled in provincial conference, held at the Car- 
penters' Hall, Philadelphia, which had met on the 18th, and 
chosen me their President, had unanimously declared their 
willingness to concur in a vote of the Congress, declaring the 
United Colonies free and independent States, and had ordered 
their declaration to be signed, and their President to deliver it 
into Congress, which accordingly I did the day following. I 
knew also, that a regiment of associators, of which I was colo- 
nel, had, at the end of May before, unanimously made the same 
declaration. These circumstances were mentioned, at the time, 
to gentlemen of my acquaintance. The error remained uncor- 
rected till the year 1781, when I was appointed to publish the 
laws of Pennsylvania, to which I prefixed the Declaration of 
Independence, and inserted my own name, with the names of 
my colleagues. Afterwards, in 1797, when the late A. J. 
Dallas, Esq., then Secretary of the Commonwealth, was ap- 
pointed to publish an edition of the laws, on comparing the 
names published as subscribed to the Declaration of Independ- 
ence, he observed a variance, and the omission, in some publi- 
cations, of the name of Thomas M'Kean. Having procured 
a certificate from the Secretary of State, that the name of 
Thomas M'Kean was affixed in his own handwriting to the 
original Declaration of Independence, though omitted in the 
journals of Congress, Mr. Dallas then requested an explanation 
of this circumstance from me; and from my answer to this 


application, the following extracts were taken and published 
by Mr. Dallas, in the appendix to the first volume of his edition 
of the laws: — . 

" 'For several years past I have been taught to think less 
unfavorably of skepticism than formerly. So many things have 
been misrepresented, misstated, and erroneously printed (with 
seeming authenticity) under my own eye, as in my opinion to 
render those who doubt of everything not altogether inexcusa- 
ble. The publication of the Declaration of Independence on 
the 4th day of July, 1776, as printed in the journals of Con- 
gress, vol. ii. p. 242, &c, and also in the acts of most public 
bodies since, so far as respects the names of the delegates or 
deputies who made that declaration, has led to the above re- 
flection. By the printed publications referred to, it would 
appear as if the fifty-five gentlemen, whose names are there 
printed, and none other, were on that day personally present 
in Congress, and assenting to the declaration ; whereas the 
truth is otherwise. The following gentlemen were not mem- 
bers on the fourth of July, 1776, namely, Mathew Thornton, 
Benjamin Rush, George Clymer, James Smyth, George Taylor, 
and George Ross, Esquires. The five last named were not 
chosen delegates until the twentieth of that month; the first, not 
until the twelfth day of September following, nor did he take 
his seat in Congress until the fourth of November, which was 
four months after. The journals of Congress, vol. ii., pages 
277 and 442, as well as those of the Assembly of the State 
of Pennsylvania, page 53, and of the General Assembly of 
New Hampshire, establish these facts. Although the six gen- 
tlemen named had been very active in the American cause, 
and some of them, to my own knowledge, warmly in favor of 
its independence previous to the day on which it was declared, 
yet I personally know that none of them were in Congress on 
that day. 

" 'Modesty should not rob any man of his just honor, when 
by that honor his modesty cannot be offended. My name is 
not in the printed journals of Congress, as a party to the De- 
claration of Independence, and this, like an error in the first 
concoction, has vitiated most of the subsequent publications, and 
yet the fact is, that I was then a member of Congress for the 
State of Delaware, was personally present in Congress, and voted 
in favor of Independence on the fourth day of July, 1776, and 


signed the Declaration, after it had been engrossed on parch- 
ment, where my name, in my own hand-writing, still appears. 
Henry Wisner, of the State of New York, was also in Congress, 
and voted for independence. 

" 'I do not know how the misstatement in the printed jour- 
nals has happened. The manuscript public journal has no 
names annexed to the Declaration of Independence, nor has the 
secret journal; fbut it appears by the latter that, on the nine- 
teenth day of Juty, 1776, the Congress directed that it should 
be engrossed on parchment, and signed by every member, and 
that it was so produced on the second of August, and signed. 
This is interlined in the secret journal, in the hand-writing 
of Charles Thompson, Esq., the Secretary. The present Sec- 
retary of State of the United States, and myself, have lately 
inspected the journals, and seen this. The journal was first 
printed by Mr. John Dunlap in 1778, and probably copies, with 
the names then signed to it, were printed in August, 1776, and 
that Mr. Dunlap printed the names from one of them.' 
" Your most obedient servant, 


Every State, except Pennsylvania and Delaware, had voted 
for the declaration. It was deemed important that the final 
vote should be unanimous. Mr. M'Kean, without delay, de- 
spatched a special messenger, at his private expense, for Mr. 
Rodney, who was in Delaware, and who reached the door of the 
State House in his boots and spurs, as Congress was opening 
on the morning of the fourth. He and Mr. M'Kean entered 
the hall in haste, and without time or opportunity to exchange 
a word about the thrilling subject of their thoughts, the pro- 
ceedings began; the great question was put. Mr. M'Kean 
and Mr. Rodney answered for Delaware, and voted in the af- 
firmative, which was two against Mr. Read; two of the dis- 
agreeing members from Pennsylvania were absent, and that 
State also voted in the affirmative. So that, by the resolution 
and perseverance of Mr. M'Kean, the final vote of all the pro- 
vinces were unanimously cast in favor of the Declaration of 
Independence; an event of the most obvious and eminent im- 
portance to the Revolution. 

In November term, 1765, and February term, 1766, Judge 
M'Kean ordered the officers of the court to proceed with their 
duties upon unstamped paper. This was the first order of the 


kind made by any court in the colonies. He was a member of 
the Continental Congress, from the State of Delaware, and Chief 
Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania at the same time. 
Both States claimed hi in. He was the only member who, 
without interruptions, filled his seat in Congress from its open- 
ing in 1774 until after the peace in 1783. During this period 
of time, he was President of Congress; colonel of a regiment 
of volunteers under Washington, for one campaign ; Chief Jus- 
tice of Pennsylvania for twenty-four years, and afterwards Go- 
vernor of that State for eight years. 

He died in Philadelphia, June 24th, 1817, in the eighty- 
fourth year of his age, loaded with honors. 

Posterity will cherish his memory, as one of the most able 
and useful fathers of a mighty republic. 

Cancia mens recti famese mendocia ridet. 



Blood— Birth— United States — Foreigners — Religion —Pagans — Chris- 
tians — The sober and frantic — But few honest— Bear the whole load of 
society — The rest complain — Lazy — Rude — Cheat — Corporations — Hy- 
pocrisy — Church — Revolutions — Illuminations — Office — Taverns — Gam- 
ing — Fi r e companies — Lynching — Mobs — Riots — Hatred — Extract — Le- 
gislative votes — Banks — Bankrupts — Orders— Labor — Extracts — Debt- 
ors — Cheating — Forgery — Fraud — Embezzlement — Judges — Office hunt- 
ers — Property — Character — Rabble — True distinctions — St. Augustine's 
church — Depravity — Motives — Changes. 

It has already been stated that education will not change 
or purify the natural depravities of the human heart, and that 
they are inherent and radical, and secretly constitute the per- 
manent and invincible propensities of our nature. 

No evidence has been so conclusive of these facts as the total 
failure of the extraordinary facilities and encouragement fur- 
nished by the United States for the moral and mental improve- 
ment of the millions of emigrants to this country. Fortunately 
for Europe, and unfortunately for us, they are of the worst 
class. This is acknowledged by all respectable foreigners. 
Their offspring, whatever may have been their opportunities 
for improvement, constantly betray the bad blood and degraded 
breed of their ancestors. 

When these inherent elements of human nature are irritated 
or provoked, they dart out like an adder, in defiance of all the 
cautions and constraints of education, which will no more re- 
strain or destroy them than a mountain piled upon a diamond will 
extinguish its inherent powers of brightness. A strong evidence 
of these general facts, and also of the truth of religion, is, that 
religion or conscience is a primary and overruling impulse; that 
it is most quick and lively with the wicked : and that it invol- 
untarily starts up with, and rebukes all sinful emotions of the 
heart. It is the natural impulse of sin confronted by the pricks 


of conscience. This conflict is, of course, more frequent and 
pungent with, the bad than the good. 

Hence so much hypocrisy and so many agonies in times of 
peril, and at death by the wicked. 

Every human being acknowledges some sort of religion, some 
Supreme Cause, and, however hardened, secretly dreads the hor- 
rors of hereafter. The pagans make fervent devotions; infi- 
dels believe in an overruling spirit ; and atheists acknowledge 
a Divine essence. 

They all crouch before the inward and secret rebukes of the 
conscience. It may be baffled and defied, but it cannot be ex- 

The forms and outward professions employed by men to de- 
monstrate the sincerity of their faith and worship, are as vari- 
ous as their natures, and range from the silent spirit meditation 
of the Quaker, up to the furious ranting of the fanatic. Per- 
haps a quiet and solemn communion with the soul is a stronger 
proof of true religion than vanity, ostentation, or penance, and 
castigation or boisterous vociferations of praise and worship. 


" If religion were a thing altogether external, then all the 
appliances and means of operation which are set in motion would 
be of some avail. If it consisted wholly in going to meeting, 
in preaching or praying, or any sort of excitement, commonly 
so called, why then it would be well to multiply services with- 
out number. But I fear that the tendency of such things is, 
in general, to abstract the attention of mankind from its essen- 
tial character, its vital principles and habits, and fix it on a 
substitute, which is comparatively of little value. 

" After not a short experience, I am strongly convinced that 
all extraordinary means of promoting religion, vulgarly called, 
are useless; that the tendency of extraordinary professions is 
to make men hypocrites : and, that anything external, beyond 
the regular observance of the Lord's Day and the services, and 
punctual support of religious instruction and worship, is of 
doubtful expediency." — (Rev. Henry Colman's European 
Life and Manners, vol. i., pages 150 and 151.) 

Yet, all pretensions and professions of religion should be 
treated with respect, and never made an object of derision. 
They evidence at least an effort to do right; and while persons 


are thus occupied, pure and conservative inspirations are more 
likely to be produced than when engaged in open sin. 

These mental exercises are often entertained too by persons 
who are imbued with a solemn sense of religious fervor, and 
who are grievously disturbed by some besetting sin, against the 
power of which in this way they wrestle, and struggle, and 
help to make resistance, and in which efforts they find most 
sympathy and comfort, amidst the active and refreshing excite- 
ments of public worship. A proper medium upon this subject 
should therefore be maintained. 

It too often happens that such persons have not accorded to 
them sufficient credit for their good intentions ■ and, indeed, the 
world, by way of excuse for its aversion to sacred thin 4 is 
prone to entertain feelings and language of uncharitablencss 'to- 
wards everything which concerns religion. 
< Great allowances are to be made too for differences of opin- 
ion; temperament, education, associations, and habits. And 
if, m the main, there is evidence of an inclination to lead a re- 
ligious life, there can be no excuse for withholding a cordial and 
true respect for it. 

There is true religion. There are saints on earth as well as 
in heaven. We should beware how we insult them, lest we 
defy Heaven. 

Religion should be largely and generously encouraged. There 
is so_ much wickedness, and the evil which comes from it so ex- 
tensive, that the bare appearance of good is refreshing and de- 
lightful; and, perhaps, the time may come when we shall learn 
to our great sorrow and bitter anguish, that the derision of 
religion and its followers, by reason of their nonconformity to 
our notions of good taste and sincerity, is blasphemy : much 
more should we be careful not to incur the terrible denuncia- 
tion which has recorded in letters of wrath that, « The fool hath 
said in his heart, there is no God." If it was not for the right- 
eous, the fate of Sodom might again fall upon the earth. & 

The honest portions of society sustain a heavy task, and are 
exposed to perpetual alarm and peril. 

Their numbers in proportion to the whole are few; and the 
entire fabric of support and order rests on them. 

It is their productive labor that maintains, and their example 
and authority that restrain, the whole mass. 

They find subsistence for the millions of helpless and wicked 
who contribute nothing by mind or means for the public weal 


but, on the contrary, embarrass and disturb society by treachery 
and fraud. 

They profess the virtues, and practice all the vices of man. 

They contribute nothing to the common stock ; and constantly 
derange and disturb the public peace. 

Every man, who enjoys the advantage of a comfortable home, 
a good character, and the means of independence, becomes an 
object of envy, jealousy, and hatred, by those who are lazy and 
wicked, and whose predominating purpose is to bring every- 
thing down to their own level. 

These are the rank and dangerous aristocrats of the United 
States; they are the men who have no respect for the feelings, 
the characters, or the rights of others. 

They insult virtue, deride talents and learning. 

They get up plots for frauds and gambling, in lotteries, cor- 
porations, monopolies, politics, and elections; they make the 
riots and fires, and fill the prisons. 

Their predominating spirit is for evil, and the natural incli- 
nation of man's passions incites, and the example of the world 
encourages to wickedness. 


Some are inherent and irreclaimably depraved, restrained by 
nothing but interest and cowardice; some have glimmerings of 
moral light, but never obtain settled views of propriety ; some 
are not favored with virtuous resolutions till they are too old 
for the temptations of sin, and still fewer are upon principle 
and choice independently pure. 

It requires self-government and firmness in virtue, a large 
share of mental vigor and divine assistance, seldom, if ever, at- 
tained under the age of fifty years, for rigid honesty. 

The propensities also involve inclination for rudeness and 
severity of deportment, a sort of haughty insolence of manner 
and speech where there is no interest to consult; and a readiness 
to cringe and fawn if any advantage is to be gained by it. 

The instances are very rare of men or women whose discri- 
mination and charity, self-esteem and judgment, are sufficiently 
strong to maintain a steady course of complaisant and dignified 
deportment towards every one they meet. 

This is a perfection of character which exclusively belongs 
to strength of intellect and lofty independence ; it cannot be 
imitated; it has no condescension or familiarity; it is mild, 
firm, elevated, and benevolent, and more strongly foreshadows 


the undcfinable image of the Almighty in man than any other 
attribute of the human character. 

There is too little kindness in the natural impulses of grown- 
up men j they are apt to be envious, jealous, suspicious, sly, and 
selfish ; always very much pleased with themselves, but not kind 
or obliging to each other; they are haughty and dogmatical to 
their cotemporaries and equals; love to talk incessantly of them- 
selves; boasting, contradicting, blustering, abusing, and fighting; 
their compacts and associations are generally formed to maintain 
and carry out these propensities; hence they form fishing, boat- 
ing, free and easy clubs, and fire companies; meet each other 
at billiard and gaming rooms, under the pretext of sociable and 
harmless intercourse, but really to obtain encouragement for 
the indulgence of their brutal propensities; and from the force 
of associations, to swell the power of conflict in party strife, or 
to obtain encouragement and countenance for coarse, obscene, 
and profane conversation, drunkenness, and gluttony. 

They prefer to spend their time amidst the spit and smoke, 
the disgusting, degrading, and promiscuous gatherings at bar- 
rooms, oyster-cellars, and other rum-holes ; about fire-plugs, 
engine-houses, and brothels; leaving at home anxious fathers, 
pious mothers, sisters, wives, and innocent children; and return 
to them debauched, polluted, and debased; obliging their friends 
and families to suffer these coarse and unmitigated wrongs in 
mournful silence. 

The rush made into the degrading employment of dram-selling 
can only be accounted for in a preference for noise, filth, bad 
company, and gambling, certainly not for idleness and want of 
larger capital, for many other occupations suit even laziness and 
short means. 

There is no more rent, capital, or labor required for an apo- 
thecary, tin, crockery, tailor, hat or shoe shop, and numerous 
other similar in-door and light employments, than for a groggery. 
In all these there are peace, order, and respectability, with a 
chance to improve and rise, if there is a wish for it; with the 
other there are noise, filth, brutality, and open or secret gambling. 
No grog-seller ever obtained the respect of virtuous persons. 

Their constant employment and associations are with drunk- 
ards. There is no room or opportunities afforded for mental and 
moral improvement; no such man or his family can ever rise, 
however civil and harmless. There is a dead weight upon them. 

Whenever, therefore, a man is seen in this business, or any 
low employment as a matter of choice, he should be marked as 


radically brutal in his propensities, and if these grog-venders 
are traced back to boyhood, they will all be found to have been 
profane, lazy, and rebellious at home, and ruffians in the street. 

"Mischief of Public-houses. — The increase of public-houses 
is more ruinous to the lowest orders of society than all other evils 
put together. The depravity of morals, and the frequent distress 
of poor families, if traced to their true source, would generally 
be found to originate in the public-house. On the contrary, 
where there is not such a house in the parish (and some such 
parishes there still are, though in distant counties), the wife 
and children of the laborer, generally speaking, enjoy happiness, 
compared with those where many public-houses are seen. They 
are also less disposed to deceive and pilfer; are better clothed, 
more cleanly in their persons, and agreeable in their manners. 

"The laborers of this count?/ are ruined in morals and con- 
stitution by the public-houses. It is a general rule, that the 
higher their wages, the less they carry home, and consequently, 
the greater is the wretchedness of themselves and their families. 
Comforts in a cottage are mostly found where the man's wages 
are low, at least so low as to require him to labor six days in 
every week. For instance, a good workman, at nine shillings 
per week, if advanced to twelve, will spend a day in the week 
at the alehouse, which reduces his labor to five days or ten 
shillings; and as he will spend two shillings in the public-house, 
it leaves but eight for his family; which is one less than they 
had when he earned only nine shillings. 

"If by any means he be put into a situation of earning 
eighteen shillings in six days, he will get drunk on Sunday and 
Monday, and go to his work stupid on Tuesday ; and, should he 
be a mechanical journeyman of some genius who by constant 
labor could earn twenty-four shillings or thirty shillings per 
week, as some of them can, he will be drunk half the week, 
insolent to his employer, and to every person about him. 

"If his master has business in hand that requires particular 
dispatch, he will then, more than at any other time, be absent 
from his work, and his wife and children will experience the 
extreme of hunger, rags, and cold. 

"The low inns on the sides of the turnpike roads are, in 
general, receiving-houses for the corn, hay, straw, poultry, eggs, 
&c, which the farmers' men pilfer from their master. 

"Many small country villages can date the commencement 
of poor-rates from the introduction of public-houses, which cor- 


rupt the morals, impair the health, impoverish and reduce the 
poor to the greatest penury and distress; 'they also encourage 
idleness, promote begging and pilfering, and are the remote 
causes of murders and executions more or less every year.' 
Patriotism may make the most fanciful designs, and liberality 
support institutions of the highest expense, for < bettering the 
condition of the poor;' and when these friends of mankind arc 
nearly on the point of persuading themselves that 'poverty shall 
sigh no more,' some fiend will open a public-house among the 
persons apparently rescued from distress; this will undo in two 
or three years all the good that the best men could bring about 
in twenty." — Middleton's Survey of Middlesex, p. 628. 

With those of humble capacity, wickedness is not so perni- 
cious; the sagacity and conventional precautions of society guard 
against them; but, with the intellectual and educated, whose 
policy and interest lie with the respectable and affluent portions 
of society, professions of virtue, everywhere and with all men 
in all times, have been artfully blended with crime. 

This recital embraces a twofold view of human depravity: 
1. The wilful propensity to do things obnoxious and wrong in 
themselves; and 2, a propensity in the perpetrator to hate and 
persecute those whose example reproves his conduct, and thereby 
increases the irritated exercises of his guilty conscience. 

This is a point of important moral inquiry. It cannot be too 
closely examined nor too freely discussed; perhaps it involves 
all the secret and hidden sources of bad actions. Evil does 
not come from accidental causes ; chance favors right, and not 

Chance is the operation of wise and general rules, ordained 
by Supreme wisdom ; and unless it is diverted in its course by 
wickedness, its fruits are wholesome. 

Depravity prevails with all its degrees and capacities of power, 
from the gentlest impulses of sin up to its full strength over 
every grade of mind, intellect, refinement; and station ; from the 
slightest leaning towards falsehood, prevarication, and trick, to 
daring perpetrations; from the timid, nervous, and shy, to the 
bold and audacious. 

The temper is restrained by nothing but cowardice. There 
is no natural kindness or Christian charity that will pass by or 
forget a wrong. 



The spirit of resentment rankles in the heart through life 
with concealed and increasing violence. The American devo- 
lution furnished numerous instances of heartless and brutal 
revenge for insignificant grudges, and the most trifling and ac- 
cidental affronts to the self-pride of those whose power of indulg- 
ence was now unrestrained by fear. 

There is no charity, no consideration, no liberality or bene- 
volence with man, but all is deep settled self-will. 

"The hidden and awful wisdom which apportions the destinies 
of man is pleased so to humiliate and cast down the tender, good, 
and wise; and to set up the selfish, the foolish, and the wicked; 
oh, be humble in prosperity, be gentle with those who are less 
lucky, if not more deserving ! 

"Think what right have you to be scornful, whose virtue is 
a deficiency of temptation, whose success may be a chance, 
whose rank may be an ancestor's accident, and whose prosperity 
perhaps may be a satire of fortune. 

" Which of us can point out a true gentleman, whose aims 
are generous and just, whose truth is constant and elevated, 
whose want of manners makes him simple, and who can look 
the world honestly in the face with an equal, manly sympathy 
for the great and the small?" — Tiiackaray. 

The propensities here recited cry aloud that " all men were 
created equal." But 

" Strange is it, that our bloods, 
Of color, weight, and heat, poured all together, 
Would quite confound distinction, yet stand off 
In differences so mighty." 
" From lowest place when virtuous things proceed, 
The place is dignified by the doer's deed: 
Where great additions swell, and virtue none, 
It is a dropsied honor; good alone 
Is good, without a name : vileness is so : 
The property by what it is should go, 
Not by the title." 

" Honors best thrive, 

When rather from our acts we them derive 
Than our fore-goers: the mere world's a slave, 
Debauched on every tomb; on every grave, 
A lying trophy, and as oft is dumb, 
Where dust, arid damn'd oblivion, is the tomb 
Ol' honored bones indeed.'' 

(Alls Well that Ends Well, Act ii., S. 3.) 


But still this howling rabble roar — 

" Raise me this beggar, and denude that lord ; 
The senator shall bear contempt hereditary, 
The beggar native honor.'' 

" Matrons, turn incontinent ! 
Obedience fail in children ! slaves and fools 
Pluck the grave wrinkled senate from the bench, 
And minister in their steads ! to common sewers 
Convert o' the instant green virginity ! 
Do't in your parents' eyes! Bankrupts, hold fast ; 
Rather than render back, out with your knives, 
And cut your trusters' throats! bound servants, steal! 
Large handed robbers your grave masters are, 
And pill by law ! maid, to thy master's bed; 
Thy mistress is o' the brothel! son of sixteen, 
Pluck the lined crutch from the old limping sire, 
With it beat out his brains! piety, and fear, 
Religion to the gods, peace, justice, truth, 
Domestic awe, night-rest, and neighborhood, 
Instruction, manners, mysteries, and trades, 
Degrees, observances, customs, and laws, 
Decline to your confounding contraries, 
And yet confusion live ! Plagues, incident to men, 
Cripple our senators, that their limbs may halt 
As lamely as their manners! lust and liberty, 
Creep in the minds and marrow of our youth ; 
That 'gainst the stream of virtue they may strive, 
And drown themselves in riot! itches, blains, 
Sow all the Athenian bosoms; and their crop 
Be general leprosy! breath infect breath, 
That their society, as their friendship, may 
Be merely poison ! Nothing I'll bear from thee 
But nakedness, thou detestable town !" 

(Timon of Athens, Act iv.) 

In March, 1850, a bill was reported in the Legislature of 
Pennsylvania for the establishment of a new system of bank- 
ing ; one of its clauses provided that no person should act as 
director, president, cashier, or officer of any bank who had ever 
taken the benefit of a bankrupt or insolvent law, or who at the 
time was indebted to any person whatever. The very general 
approbation with which this precaution was received by the 
public was soon hushed by a motion instantly adopted by a 
large majority to strike it out. 

Most of the banks and insurance offices are got up for the 
express accommodation of brokers, insolvent and bankrupt 
jobbers who have failed in business repeatedly, and, finally, 
when their credit and cunning will no longer enable them to 


carry on hazardous adventures, and live in extravagance off of 
the public, have recourse to this genteel mode for a permanent, 
lucrative, and lounging retirement from the blustering cares of 
the world. 

The ostensible objects of these institutions are plausibly and 
secretly urged upon the sinister feelings of the legislature, who 
are coaxed and bargained with, and when the impudent and 
pernicious monopoly is organized, it is found to be the creation 
of some dozens of unprincipled, broken-down rogues, who have 
conspired together to obtain a legal sanction for the establish- 
ment of a moneyed corporation to accommodate themselves ; and 
that some profligate bankrupt, whose indiscretion and extrava- 
gance have rendered him wholly unfit for the honest pursuits of 
commerce, is put at its head, in order that they may have un- 
disturbed control of the capital, the issues, and the deposits, 
for the purposes of usury and stock -jobbing. 

A legal investigation, some time since, disclosed peculations 
in one of these sinks of infamous corruption, by which twenty 
millions of money had been secretly and fraudulently embez- 
zled by five of its penniless officers, upon spurious hypotheca- 
tions, not one cent of which was ever recovered, and the only 
record of which was in pencil mark upon a single sheet of 
paper, accidentally discovered, two years after the explosion of 
the bank, amongst a pile of rubbish in the corner of a closet. 

A similar disclosure was made of another set of polished and 
well-fed scoundrels, who complacently forged certificates of 
stocks and loans to the amount of several millions, for a series 
of years, for any amount, without stint, record, objection, or 
restraint, as the cupidity and felonious impulses of these offi- 
cial accomplices were excited. 

These are frauds of daily occurrence ; they are never ex- 
posed except by accident, and always hushed up, and passed over 
when they are detected. 

No instance, perhaps, can be named in which these institu- 
tions originate with or are conducted by honest and disinte- 
rested men. 

They obtain the votes, and keep control of the elections ; 
their objects and practical operations are for private accommo- 
dation and personal indulgence, and not for the general good ; 
to furnish sly rogues and plausible hypocrites with the means 
of monopoly, extortion, and plunder, and not to encourage ho- 
nest labor and useful enterprise. 


The vote of the legislature referred to was not prompted by 
feelings of compassion for the unfortunate poor man; patient 
industry and sound discretion very seldom fail in business, 
unless from fire or tempest, or some unavoidable calamity. 

But the vote in question was secretly influenced by private 
and wicked sympathies for rogues, which those who thus voted 
would have been ashamed to avow; the subterfuge under which 
they acted was benevolence. But the real motive by which 
they were governed was a sel6sh leaning in favor of sloth, 
swindling, and fraud. The honest farmers and mechanics do 
not ask forchartered monopolies. They hate them. 

There is not a moneyed monopoly in any State in the Union 
that was not got up. under the most solemn pretensions of 
public good, but really with the covert design of private use. 

The Farmers', Manufacturers', Lumbermens', Butchers', and 
Drovers' Banks, ostensibly incorporated for these industrial 
classes, never have directors from or grant loans to these meri- 
torious classes, unless it be to those of them who are covertly 
engaged in these pursuits, but really with some other object in 

These institutions immediately fall into the hands of brokers, 
jobbers, shavers, and polished rogues. 

It is in the fair and honest recognition, and friendly and 
frank reciprocation, of the proper distinctions amongst men, 
that society finds its capacities for cohesion and duration. 

All orders and degrees of mind, education, manners, morals, 
conditions, and employment have their respective and appro- 
priate spheres of existence and action, and nothing but jargon 
and discord can come from their promiscuous mixture. The 
demand for agrarianizing property is as absurd as the attempt 
to level the social, moral, and mental condition of men. 

They are established and secured by their relative and reci- 
procal dependence on each other. What would be the condi- 
tion of the rich, and the poor, both, if property was divided 
upon the social system, from time to time, so as to keep the 
whole mass equal, but the ultimate consumption of all the 
elements of subsistence; and what moral light, protection, or 
safety would the helpless and the ignorant have, if all human 
mind and knowledge were degraded down to the level of the 
vulgar, the ignorant, and the infamous ? 

To obtain the necessary supplies for animal subsistence, 
requires industry, labor, forecast, and discretion; every one in 


health, if he chooses, may find employment, and if he faithfully 
attends to his business and to his home, with the period required 
for repose, his whole time will be occupied, and thus he will be 
kept out of the way of temptation and bad company. 

This appropriate employment of life, so repugnant to the lazy 
and the wicked, is a blessing in disguise, ordained by the wis- 
dom and mercy of Heaven for the peace and security of man ; 
and it is the laboring, productive, and virtuous classes of society 
that form the foundations of public dependence and safety. 

Those who have strong mental faculties may possess more 
forecast and excel in the pursuit of science, arts, husbandry, 
commerce, &c. ; but they are not more useful ; all have their 
spheres of usefulness ; while the latter adds to the wisdom 
and wealth of the community, the others contribute to the es- 
sential elements of public support. 

There are those, with education and intellect, with malicious 
enmity to all order. They disclaim against all distinction. 
The respectable do not trumpet their own praise ; and as they 
are the objects of malice and slander, their true value is not 
known or fairly appreciated by the ignorant. 

They denounce and repudiate all orders, degrees, morality, 
and mind, and struggle to bring down to their own level every- 
thing that is pure, exalted, and noble. 

Their proclamation is that, 

" Degree being vizarded, 
The unworthiest shows as fairly in the mask." 

And they blaspheme the law which rules and the spirit which 
says that 

" The heavens themselves, the planets, and this centre, 
Observe degree, priority, and place, 
Constancy, course, proportion, season, form, 
Office, and custom, in all line of order; 
And therefore is the glorious planet, Sol, 
In noble eminence, enthroned and sphered 
Amidst the other." 

" But when the planets, 

In evil mixture, to disorder wander, 

What plagues, and what portents! what mutiny ; 

What raging of the sea ; shaking of earth ; 

Commotion in the winds ; frights, changes, horrors, 

Divert and crack, rend and deracinate 

The unity and married calm of states 

Quite from their fixture - ? O, when degree is shaked, 


Which is the ladder of all high designs, 

The enterprise is sick ! How could communities, 

Degrees in schools, and brotherhoods in cities, 

Peaceful commerce from divided shores, 

The primogenitive and due of birth, 

Prerogative of age (law, rule, honor), 

But by degree, stand in authentic place? 

Take but degree away, untune that string, 

And, hark, what discord follows! each thing meets 

In mere oppugnancy: The bounded waters 

Should lift their bosoms higher than the shores, 

And make a sop of all this solid globe : 

Strength should be lord of imbecility, 

And the rude son should strike his father dead: 

Force should be Tight ; or, rather, right and wrong 

(Between whose endless jar justice resides) 

Should lose their names, and so should justice too. 

Then everything includes itself in power, 

Power into will, will into appetite; 

And appetite, an universal wolf, 

So doubly seconded with will and power, 

Must make perforce an universal prey, 

And, last, eat up himself. 

This chaos, when degree is suffocate, 

Follows the choking. 

And this neglection of degree it is 

That by a pace goes backward, with a purpose 

It hath to climb. The general 's disdain'd 

By him one step below: he by the next; 

That next by him beneath ; so every step, 

Exampled by the first pace that is sick 

Of his superior, grows to an envious fever 

Of pale and bloodless emulation." 

(Troilus and Cressida, Act i. S. 3.) 

They openly proclaim or secretly wish — 

"'Let Heaven kiss earth! now let not nature's hand 
Keep the wild flood confined ! let order die! 
And let this world no longer be a stage, 
To feed contention in a lingering act; 
But let one spirit of the first-born Cain 
Reign in all bosoms, that each heart being set 
On bloody courses, the rude scene may end; 
And darkness be the burier of the dead.'" 

(2d part King Henry, Act i, S. 2.) 

It .would seem that the dignified occupations of executive, 
legislative, and judicial officials placed them above the influence 
of sordid inducements; yet in all these departments, it has ever 
been that these elevated incentives to honesty do not control 


the pride, or preserve the honor, but that these stations are 
eagerly sought for to accommodate the most heated desires for 
venal and treacherous perpetrations. 

Committees of Congress, and State legislators in this country 
have repeatedly detected and exposed acts of unblushing pecu- 
lation and wrong; much, no doubt, is undiscovered; and, al- 
though these places are too much exposed for concealment, and 
the obvious policy of every man in office is to be honest, yet 
the instances of these considerations being wholly disregarded, 
forces the belief that all office-hunters, and none others seem to 
obtain them, are in grit and grain remorseless villains. 

These ripped up, uncontradicted, and unpunished violations 
of duty no longer excite surprise. What notice was taken of 
the recent insolent and enormous embezzlement of the govern- 
ment funds; or of the judicial abuses, denials of justice, cor- 
rupt co-partnerships, patronage for personal and public extortion 
and plunder, which have been openly and without a blink, 
audaciously and publicly perpetrated for years past? Vide 
"Ledger," March 3, 1848. 

In 1835, there was a law relating to Orphans' Courts, re- 
ported and about to be passed, directing that the judges should 
examine the accounts of executors, &c, unless an interested 
party should request their reference to an auditor. Just as this 
bill was about to be passed, a proviso was covertly added, that 
this act should not apply to a certain county therein named. 
The political judges on the bench of that county had sufficient 
interest to have the law so altered as to force the reference of 
all such accounts to auditors, against the will of the real par- 

This provision threw these accounts, embracing millions every 
year, into the exclusive power of these sly and sordid judges, 
who in turn grabbed the monthly budget, for secret distribu- 
tion to their hungry subscrvients. 

Thus an oppressive law is forced upon the people of one 
county out of fifty-six counties in that State. 

The real parties in interest in these immense trusts and funds 
are tyrannically compelled to suffer unlimited exactions. The 
fee bill as to this had been covertly repealed, and the parties 
were left to arbitrary patronage and spoils. 

Time is wasted in sinister delays and pretexts for extortion- 
ate charges; whole estates are locked up for years, and often 
wasted and squandered. 


What with trusts, and roads, licenses for grog-shops, audits, 
commissioners, and monopolies, annually there has been ob- 
tained in fees by this special partnership, in a single county, 
more than $100,000 :— 

This kite-tail law was snapped off in 1845, but it was se- 
cretly restored within a year; and the people are again in the 
hands of these corrupt and extortionate harpies. 

This vile patronage was rich and bold enough to sweat the 
itching palms of potent senators, and leave enough to gorge the 
greedy maws of all the rest. 

Wars, pestilence, and famine not half the havoc make that 
comes upon the world, in dark and bitter floods, by erruined 
dignity and fraud. 

A judge, in his charge to a grand jury in 1850, for the first 
time in many years that this truth had come from the bench, 
had the independence to nominate the three hundred criminals 
returned upon a two months' calendar, and to suggest that 
"men of property and respectability should take tin's matter 
into their own hands." 

This reference to persons of property and respectability 
brought out the denunciations of the rabble, and their polluted, 
corrupt newspapers. They said that this was an impudent 
attempt to establish classes and casts by the aristocracy against 
the poor, and the sickening puerility for reforming criminals 
by the soothing system was preached over by a long leader in 
one of these papers, in which it was revealed that a hardened 
and veteran malefactor, just then escaped from Botany Bay, 
and thereafter committed to prison in Philadelphia for burglary, 
had been found with large welts upon his back : and that now Eng- 
land would be taught how this subject of their cruelty would be 
tamed and coaxed back to the paths of purity by our pardoning 

There is no true definition of the words property and respect- 
ability that will accommodate the morbid and malignant spirit 
of the mob. 

They do not admit that the words men of property only mean 
those who have honestly acquired property, and have the good 
sense to appreciate its value and take care of it; and that the 
expression " persons of respectability," whether rich or poor, 
implies those who conscientiously respect equal justice and law. 


This is all that was ever meant by these terms, so offensive 
to the rabble. 

Honest men want no distinctions : all they want is to be let 
alone. But the rogues and disturbers of the public peace and 
safety have compelled the industrious and virtuous portions of 
society to establish castes : one of these classes is for peace, order, 
and security; and another is for anarchy and pillage. One is 
for equal justice, and the other is for fraud and aggression. 

The contention is between the bad and the good ; those who 
want a chance to earn their living, and those who riot in insur- 
rection and plunder. 

Essentially appurtenant to the selfish spirit of man, is his 
ungovernable passion for superiority and sway ; it is the root of 
all the dangerous and deceitful propensities : and, as it is hid- 
den, he imagines that it is unknown to others, and, therefore, 
he is often the subject of singular mental conflicts between his 
will and his discretion. 

Those not radically very wicked bluster and vapor, and en- 
deavor to obtain applause by foppery and ostentation ; while 
those of this temper, without conscience or caution, contradict, 
dispute, insult, and quarrel, and, if not checked in some way, 
they soon obtain encouragement by fellowship, and become 
open bullies. 

Cowards disguise this feeling by plausible complacency, but 
secretly hold themselves above and against all others; and all 
men, as an offset to the suspicion that they are underrated or 
outdone, cherish bitter hatred against all who are objects of 
jealousy or envy. There are but few open rowdies; they are re- 
strained by fear, but they are readily drawn together and united 
by social stimulations. 

It is, therefore, necessary to check and prevent these perni- 
cious approximations. They should not be suffered to herd and 
openly run together, or take any part in the affairs of the pub- 
lic. They secretly act upon the impulse of their brutal pas- 
sions; and the result of their open and promiscuous combina- 
tions has always resulted in anarchy and violence. 

No private or public grievance can be lawfully redressed by 
threats, defiance, and mobs. There never was an open turn- 
out by mechanics, tenants, or trades, that did not degrade their 
participants. All fire and party processions, with shouts, mili- 
tary music, banners, and torch-lights, agitate, alarm, and en- 
danger the public repose. They are impudent and artful con- 


trivances to substitute the hypocritical pretensions of the worst 
men for the legitimate and efficient authority of the law; and 
no man of intelligence and honor ever took part in these vulgar 
and insurrectionary occasions, who left them without self-re- 

Let all the trades and occupations organize themselves for 
instruction, protection, and the promotion of industry and order; 
let the people, by parties, meet, discuss, and take distinct, 
open, popular, and independent action upon all matters which, 
by the institutions of the country, have been legitimately re- 
served to them. 

Let them, with proud pomp and gorgeous display, institute 
horticultural, agricultural, and artistical exhibitions, munifi- 
cently cherish and foster literary and scientific emulation, libe- 
rally patronise and encourage music, eloquence, innocent 
amusements, baths, balls, harmless recreations, temperance, and 
Sunday school associations, public worship, and pure religion. 

In all these rich and glorious social exhilarations of body 
and mind, of the pure and precious aspirations of our weak and 
wayward nature, there should be unbounded indulgence. 

For those who prefer these aspirations for the charms of 
home, friendship, and intellectual cultivation, a beautiful sys- 
tem of social harmony is achieved, which largely increases the 
stock of mental happiness. 

They blend the concurring affinities of our nature, and neu- 
tralize the shock of discordant elements which refuse congene- 

Infinite care in this should be employed to put down the 
first attempt for universal equality ; all efforts to level the per- 
sonal, moral, mental, or pecuniary distinctions of men by any 
standard are unnatural. 

Banish factions, monopolies, and gambling ; disperse and 
drive away all gatherings from rum-holes, corners, and fires ; 
and suppress their plots to command public countenance and 
sanction, by processions and public displays. Their secret 
meetings cannot be prevented, but they should not be suffered 
openly to aggregate themselves by celebrations as respectable 
persons, or to hold possession of the public peace and safety, 
under the pretext of subduing fires. Persons of this descrip- 
tion are only fit for fighting battles, or performing similar brutal 
services, under the discipline of stringent authority. 

If they are permitted openly to organize as societies or com- 


panics, a sympathetic fusion of bad passions follows, which 
might not occur if they are kept asunder. Their readiness for 
aggression is upon a footing with old convicts and malefactors, 
and they differ from them only in not being so well known. 
They are essentially obnoxious to those who, from cowardice, 
self-interest, or conscience, hold themselves honest; all the rest 
of mankind secretly encourage, and, when they dare, they con- 
nive at, and excuse them ; and especially those women who 
love idleness, and delight in gallantries and intrigue. 

They are wholly insensible to, and indifferent to the appre- 
ciations of the rank, morals, or character of the man who will 
secretly wed them, and minister to their keen and unsated ap- 
petite for fashionable and splendid prodigality. Such wives do 
not desert their husbands, nor get nervous shocks when they 
are suspected or convicted of infamous perpetrations ; on the 
contrary, they revel in their ill-gotten luxuries, cling to their 
husbands with tears and mourning, and hypocritically implore 
the general sympathy for their lawful wedded sorrow. 

It is this inveterate spirit of over-riding, and treading down 
all right and order, that produces clamorous and irresponsible 
organizations: they should be narrowly watched, and frustrated 
by the whip, the dungeon, or the halter. They know that 
they have no just claim to public or individual countenance, 
and get up dangerous conspiracies, under fierce and restless ex- 
citements, for distinction and control ; and thus, under fraudu- 
lent simulations of virtue, thrust themselves before the public, 
obtain its confidence and toleration, and then, by fraudulent 
means, level, degrade, and agrarianize the true distinctions 
and just appreciations of mental and moral refinements, and 
banish all obstacles to their brutal lust for rapine and desola- 

They consist of the lazy, turbulent, sly, drunken, hypocriti- 
cal, and desperate of all ages and ranks, without regard to in- 
tellect, knowledge, or condition, everywhere ; but principally in 
large cities, and along with the transit and promiscuous gather- 
ings upon railroads and steamers, and at hotels and watering- 
places, where they revel in secret fraud, and plunder, from the 
vile vagabond and cut-purse that infest the streets by day, and 
untenanted buildings and barns by night; the midnight gambler, 
rioter, burglar, house-burner, and murderer, through all the 
grades of character, occupation; position, and rank, up to the 


corrupt and reckless politician, and the heartless and cold- 
blooded corporation robber. 

It would seem as if this vile passion of self-love and domina- 
tion stimulated and led off to activity all the other depravities 
of tbe heart. 

The honest portions of society should combine, confederate, 
and agree together to put down and perpetually keep under, by 
the resolutions of lawful force, all the pernicious and destruc- 
tive elements of discord and violence. There should be tole- 
rated no artificial, unfair, aristocratical, or conventional ad- 
vantages by an individual or set, over others ; no man, or set 
of men, should be allowed to conspire, by covert schemes and 
false pretences, to make money off of, or obtain any advantages 
over others. It is inconsistent with the wise and wholesome 
dispensations of equal justice and right for any one to be too 
rich or opulent, or to hold too much distinction in any of the 
conventional spheres of society. 

It inflates their pride and vanity without their knowing it; 
makes them proud, haughty, and restless; and naturally and 
unavoidably mortifies and frets others who have not these ad- 
vantages, and who are their equals, and, perhaps, their betters, 
and compels them to feel the crushing severity and injustice of 
this arrogant superiority. 

The distinctions which rest upon the foundations of virtue, 
intellect, industry, and religion, excite, with the possessor, 
subdued sensations of unaffected humility and benevolence; 
and, with the beholder, emotions of sincere applause. These 
are the only attributes of superiority which really do exist, and 
all others should be resolutely prevented and rigidly put down 
by this wholesome and salutary system; every honest man will 
have his proper, appropriate, and acknowledged rank cheerfully 
and frankly conceded to him ; and, instead of competitions and 
rivalries on one side, and heartburnings ' on the other side, 
with all reputable persons there will happily and permanently 
prevail a glorious millennium of sincere and mutual harmony 
and congratulation. 

That portion of public opinion which rests with, or comes 
from those who are engaged in open or secret wickedness and 
fraud, and all those who encourage and sympathize with them 
from any cause, however elevated may be their ostensible rank 
is most essentially unjust and arbitrary. 

24* • 


A merchant in Philadelphia, having occasion to consult 
counsel in New York, went there. He was carried to a fash- 
ionable party, where he incidentally mentioned the name of his 
proposed attorney. He was told that he was a man without 
cast or character, and that, if he employed him, he would be 
cut by all his friends. Several were referred to, who ratified 
this warning, and recommended another lawyer, as they said, 
of acknowledged eminence. 

The gentleman presently waited on the good old Chancellor 
Kent, who fully endorsed the professional rank of the slandered 
lawyer, and explained the secret of these malignant backbiters. 

The attorney in question happened to be engaged in the 
criminal prosecution of a nest of corporation cheats, to which 
this party belonged, and he, the eminent friend, was engaged 
to defend them. 

The Chancellor very distinctly told him that, if he desired to 
lose all caste with honest men, he could certainly do so by list- 
ening to the authors of this slander. 

The same intolerant spirit is ever found with the sordid, the 
mean, cowardly, haughty, vain, prejudiced, and tyrannical, in all 
spheres of society. They deny that any one who stands in the 
way of their grasping selfishness has any good quality, or that 
they ever do even a good act with honest purposes. Some one 
of these motives may be always traced to every one who is free 
about the faults, or sullen about the good qualities of others. 
There is something in the misfortunes of their best friends that 
they do not dislike. 

The religious and moral portions of society, not the truly 
pious and good, but their fashionable imitators, are most arbi- 
trary and unbending in their denunciations against every spe- 
cies of real or suspected incontinency. 

It is of no consequence how many redeeming virtues there 
be, however honest, true-learned, or useful, no excuse is 

The cut is maliciously dead ; no countenance or toleration is 
suffered, and a systematic course of cold, undying, sleepless 
persecution is resolutely waged against every one soiled or 
blurred with this delinquency. A damned lie is as good for 
this arbitration, and as fatal to its object, as the truth. A pre- 
vious marriage is disbelieved; after marriage is from force or 
fear; contrition, repentance, and reformation, which are all that 
Heaven deru/tnds, avail nothing. 

The judgment of Christ upon this offence, pronounced upon 


the self-condemned woman, "taken in adultery" — "neither do 
I condemn thee" — is nothing. 

Nothing will wipe off this blot, or appease the unrelenting 
wrath of these fashionable moralists for un wedded indulgence, 
or extort a single emotion of charity for this impregnable im- 
pulse : more overwhelming than avarice or the love of glory, 
with both which, but not with this, unsuccessful temptations 
were made upon the mountain. — St. Luke, chap. iv. 

Presumptuous, scornful, dissimulating Man and Woman ! 
Subdue and smother down the fierce and secret glowings in thy 
sensual, jealous soul, before thou condemnest even the convicted, 
much less the suspected transgressor. Do not dare to scoff 
at the benignant mercy of thy Saviour, and profanely arro- 
gate to thyself an attribute He disclaimed, lest thou too be 
"convicted by thine own conscience," and forever banished from 
his favor by the awful and scathing condemnation he pro- 
nounced upon the guilty hypocrites in the temple at Jerusalem 
— "He that is without sin amongst ye, let him first cast a stone 
at her." — St. John, ch. viii. 

Much of the personal discomforts of life come from the want 
of an appropriate spirit of thinking, discrimination, comparison, 
and enterprise. We submit to lounge life away in poverty 
and obscurity rather than make spirited exertions. 

Most men are passive, inert, neutral, stunted, or disfigured 
in their animal developments and mental capacities, wherein 
there is betrayed an evident want of symmetry and harmony, 
which is more readily observed and understood than it is sus- 
ceptible of being defined or described. 

They are creatures of mere circumstances ; if naturally of 
bad propensity, they are a public nuisance, as paupers or cri- 
minals; and if passive in their feelings, and constrained to 
habits of labor in youth, become mere drudges. 

Those above this standard, if honest, aspire to pursuits of 
profit or distinction. 

If husbandmen, they squander no labor or time on barren 
and unproductive ground, but pitch their tents upon the plains 
and valleys of exuberant growth, where no manure or wasting 
sweat is required to fructify their crops. 

If their employments are in commerce, science, or the arts, 
they amalgamate with rich and prosperous communities for pa- 
tronage, opulence, and fame. 


The wide and glorious world, with all its lovely hills and 
dells, roaring torrents, sparkling springs and streams, its golden 
harvests of fruits, and mind and heart, and social joy, by Hea- 
ven is spread abroad for man's delight; and slothful he who 
loiters on the greedy sands and sterile heath, because his father's 
bones have rotted there. 

The mob took possession of St. Augustine's church, in the 
heart of the city of Philadelphia early in the day, and avowed 
their determination to burn it that night. More than one thou- 
sand armed men were mustered to the neighborhood, who could 
have cleared away, and formed a cordon round the scene of in- 
surrection in half an hour ; but they received no orders to 
move. At nightfall, some twenty or thirty ruffians leaped into, 
and fired this costly and splendid edifice. 

The adjacent streets were crowded with thousands, of all 
sexes and ages. The building was wrapt in flames, and the 
tottering turret, with its burning beams, like bars of red-hot 
iron, brightened the heavens with noonday light. 

It craned and trembled, without a murmur from the applaud- 
ing multitude. 

What were the mental impulses of this throng of human 
souls? Where was the moral emotion to shrink with horror at 
this wanton destruction of property, this savage desecration of 
the public peace ? Was there not an overwhelming predomi- 
nation in every breast of brutal and depraved propensities, of 
open and violent insurrection against the laws of the land ? Did 
not a fiend from hell sit in triumph over every heart that 
uttered shouts of joy on that awful occasion ? 

We do not know ourselves, and shrink from reproof ; it is ob- 
noxious to our vanity and pride, and affronts our self-love. 

The rules of society are refinements in the art of passing 
over, and omitting to notice the faults of men ; and private in- 
tercourse requires literal concessions of personal respect. 

Nor are there any metaphysical elucidations upon the in- 
stinct, the will, the desire, the motive, and upon mental neces- 
sity and moral liberty, which can change or alter the plain, 
practical demonstration, that the human heart is resolutely in- 
clined to heedless, obstinate, headstrong, wilful sin ; and that 
its manifest predominations of choice are for wickedness. 

It is idle and useless to excuse it under the plea of ignorance, 


bad example, or temptation ; these artifices are prompted by the 
same depraved spirit of evil that perpetrates sin. 

Every one who has the mental power called Will, the faculty 
which prompts to do an act, has knowledge enough to know 
what he does ; and, if he does a bad act, why does he do it but 
for the love of doing it; and why love to do it if his inherent 
propensity is not evil ? Why is it that fools do no good acts, 
and that they are always doing bad acts, but that their natural 
inclinations are evil ? They know what they do ; it is from 
choice; they know it is wrong, and they do it wilfully. 

The bent, the leaning, the preponderating impulses of the 
heart are for evil ; the actions- and lives of all bad men show 
this, and the acknowledgments and confessions of all honest 
men confirm it. 

All the concealments, covert fraud, trick, disguise, chicane ; 
all the open contempt and rebellion against right and law 
are only so many proofs and acknowledgments that sin is 
known by its perpetrators to be wrong ; and that they do it 
wilfully, and with their eyes open. 

A thorough understanding of these fundamental obstacles to 
the laws should be fearlessly examined, and their practical cha- 
racter promptly resisted. 

The political and moral institutions of society cannot exist 
upon any other basis than virtue and honor ; every dishonest 
use of the public authority, and all abuses of its peace and 
safety, are an open insurrection and rebellion against the people 
and their government. 

Every one capable of choosing, and of willing to do an act, 
and of doing the act by his own free will, knows what he does. 
He acts under no necessity, but by his unrestrained liberty; for 
which he should be promptly and sufficiently punished. To 
excuse or screen him is just as bad as to justify him. He 
must be restrained or removed if he will not let others alone ; 
or they go without redress, and he is encouraged to repeat his 

The preservation of individual rights and public security is 
as essential to their existence as the necessary means for the 
protection of life from fatal contacts; and there is the same 
urgent occasion to vindicate and defend the first as there is to 
shelter and protect the other. 

It is a question of life and death, in which no apathy or 
sympathy can be reasonably or safely indulged. 


It is just as reprehensible to stand by and suffer a mad dog 
to bite a child, without smiting the brute dead, as it is for so- 
ciety to permit thieves and murderers to rob and kill without 
prompt and unsparing extinguishment. 

The rattlesnake and the wolf are no more dangerous to life 
than the burglar and murderer ; neither should be excused or 
spared under any subterfuge or pretext whatever. 

The one attacks man's life by a natural instinct for destruc- 
tion, the other by a wilful desire for rapine and blood ; the hu- 
man brute is therefore less excusable than the dumb beast. 

No occasion should be omitted for exposing these vile and 
pernicious propensities of the human heart; to contrast the 
imminent exposure and immeasurable responsibility of those 
who maintain the public weal; to show how the wicked and per- 
verse inclinations of a portion of society disturb the public 
repose, and to detect and classify their leading and most obnox- 
ious traits ; to index the secret springs of their mental opera- 
tions, and to show the utter impracticability of reaching their 
hearts by any of the ordinary means of reasoning, reproof, or 
admonition ; to crush wrong by iron force, and to protect right 
against wilful aggression without stint or false mercy. 

The wicked are becoming better educated, more crafty, and 
powerful ; they combine more physical strength, intellectual 
force, with more sympathy from the masses, than they have 
ever before had. They should be narrowly watched, jealously 
tried, and extirpated without compunction. 

There is no regal or military arm to curb their bent, and no 
efficient, judicial, or political authority, as the factions and 
parties now exist, to arrest or restrain their progress. 

They spare no home, no name, nor sex, nor age, nor life; 
they lurk in midnight confederation, rob, burn, and murder; 
they conflagrate and spill blood for love of rapine; juries, 
judges, and executives screen them from punishment; the 
halter should be their doom, and all honest men should com- 
bine to obliterate them and their foul confederates from the 
face of the earth. 

The only remedy is for the honest and respectable members 
of society to cast off the ridiculous and unmeaning indifference 
they have heretofore exhibited about public affairs and crimi- 
nal punishments ; for every man to join some one of the politi- 
cal parties ; go to the primary meetings ; have them held in 


the daytime, and away from taverns and rum-holes ; keep out 
drunkards and office-hunters from every party; let no one 
have authority to nominate himself for office, and no man he 
allowed to vote, or elected or appointed to office who is not 
sober, competent, industrious, and responsible ; and thus put 
under, and for ever keep down this rabble of depraved and 
abandoned scoundrels, who prey upon society by bypocrisy 
and political intrigue. 

The present alarming and censurable apathy with the intel- 
ligent and responsible portions of society upon this momentous 
subject must be cast off, the plausible absurdities of cowardly 
and covert rogues in the guise of reformers, and the whole 
swarm of political gamesters, must be for ever banished, and 
the tone and dignity of public constraint must be restored to a 
wholesome and stringent standard of necessary and primitive 
rigor; or the present career of crime and violence will jeopard 
the pure and noble institutions of the only free country upon 
the face of the globe. 



Definition — Political — Nobility — Titles — Land — Moneyed corporations — 
Monopolies — Industry — Employments — Honor — Examples— Sympathies 
— United States — Army — Navy — Vagabonds — Fungus — Distinctions — 
Passions — Avarice — Pride — Oppression — Power — Kings — Mobs — Mu- 
nicipal law — Politics — Fashion — Custom, &c. — Punishments — Dema- 
gogues — The rabble — Orders — Degrees — Merit — Causes of aristocracy 
— Women — Children — Domestic circles — Arbitrary laws of society — 
Municipal laws — Depravities — Rulers — Politicians — Shylocks — Fashion. 

The very general mismanagement of children ; their idleness 
and indulged propensities at the only period of life in which 
habits of industry, self-government, and integrity can be formed, 
are, from the ignorance, carelessness, and vanity of parents, 
almost universal. 

There is a foolish disposition ■with parents, who are called 
well to do in the world, to have their children schooled, dressed, 
and accommodated with pocket money, amusements and caprices, 
according to the undefined and ridiculous standards of fashion 
which they form, by a superficial reference to families above 
them, with whom they have no acquaintance, and with whose 
domestic arrangements they are totally ignorant. 

The children of those in the humble spheres of life are per- 
mitted to range the streets day and night ; are not taught to 
read or work, or furnished with any moral instructions. 

Thus encouraged, as they grow up, they become coarse, rude, 
vulgar, and profane ; hate labor ; abuse respectable persons ; 
soon learn to repudiate their debts ; lie, swindle, cheat, defraud, 
and steal, and defy law and religion. 

The natural depravity of the human heart is prone to all these 
vices ; to prevent them from being engrafted upon the instincts 
of nature, requires the most careful discipline and training in 

Where these inherent hereditary propensities prevail, there 
is no moral remedy. 


From these causes, and from these sources, an incredible 
number of persons, thus degenerated, are at maturity cast upon 
the world. 

They practice and subsist on the credulity of society ; are 
sheltered from its indignation by the crafty concealment of their 
real characters, and spared from the penalties of open perpe- 
tration by their inherent precautions and cowardice. 

In the warm months, thousands of them are seen shooting in 
fens and hedges, bobbing upou the flats, and streams, lounging 
in skiffs and shades, smoking, drinking, and guzzling in brutal 

In the winter weeks, they loaf in taverns, oyster-cellars, bil- 
liard and gaming rooms, at corners, and on fire-plugs ; and send 
their mothers, wives, and children to solicit charity and beg; 
while they pilfer, debauch, make fights, fires, riots, mobs; fill 
almshouses, prisons, and penitentiaries. 

It is from this class of society, and those by nature bent on 
mischief, that the roots of aristocracy shoot off, in all its con- 
cealed and hidden windings. 

These vile propensities of the human heart are irrespective of 
intellect ; and, therefore, this portion of the community furnishes 
rank and file for all the pursuits of imposition, duplicity, abuse, 
and oppression. 

These are the pernicious and dangerous sources from whence, 
in all countries, and in all ages, have sprung the pests and per- 
secutors of man. 

From the pilfering beggar to the imperial cut- throat; from the 
petty swindler to the highway robber; from the nostrum ven- 
der to the tilted pedagogue ; and from the street brawler to the 
audacious pirate. 

And just in proportion to their impunity, are the sufferings 
of all portions of men increased and multiplied. 

Originally, the word aristocracy was used to signify the dis- 
tinction between a despotic and a supposed better form of go- 
vernment, placed in the hands of an order of privileged persons. 

When this number was reduced to a few, the government was 
called an oligarchy; which implied a corrupted aristocracy. 

But now the word aristocracy is used to express the name or 
feeling entertained for every species of imposition, and unlawful 
inequality; every act of wrong and injustice; everything cruel, 


oppressive, and brutal; whether it be inflicted by one man on 
a thousand, or by one thousand on one man. 

All these things are denominated aristocracy; and the perpe- 
trators are called aristocrats. 

The man or the men who sneer at honest labor and true re- 
ligion—who are lazy, live on others, meddle with and plague 
their neighbors, disturb the peace, and dabble in public affairs 
f or gain— are as impudent and offensive aristocrats, in their 
sphere, and according to their opportunities, as the brawling 
political intriguer, the feudal lord, the titled baron, or sceptered 

The broad and popular definition of the word aristocracy, in 
the United States, now means everything that trenches upon 
equality and freedom. 

It applies to morals, manners, politics, religion, and all the 
relations of life ; and it is really understood to mean any unfair 
ascendency and domination in any of the pursuits or depart- 
ments of life; in all of which it is regarded as odious, hateful, 
and detestable. 

There is no measure or limit to its powers of irritation, its 
singular faculties to annoy. 

In various shapes and forms, and under different names and 
pretexts, this assumption and abuse of power have perpetrated 
more perplexing outrages than were ever suffered from the curse 
of toil and sweat put on Adam. 

There is no subject now that produces so much restless ex- 
citement and bitterness, with the people of the United States, 
as their ridiculous apprehensions, and misconceived notions, of 

In one sense, perhaps, aristocracy might be said to mean the 
stigma inflicted by a forfeiture and corruption of blood, being 
the heaviest blow of power; and the titles and orders of nobility 
of the Old World, which secure for the few over the many most 
unjust and oppressive privileges. 

In this country, there are no such penalties or advantages al- 
lowed; they are all expressly forbidden by constitutional inhi- 
bitions; and every man is put upon an equal footing as to all 
political franchises; and if he is convicted of a crime, there is 
no infliction but that which falls on himself; his children have 
the same chance for success as if he had died a saint. 

And the spirit of liberality in this respect has been most won- 
derfully exercised in the United States. 


Men and women from convicted parentage, who but for tbis 
charitable indulgence would have been infamous, have beeu suf- 
fered to take respectable rank in society; and when their con- 
duct has been proper, their tainted lineage has been wholly over- 

They should be narrowly watched ; for, if the moral virus is 
in their blood, their circumspection of conduct will be much 
more likely to be influenced by considerations of policy than 

Whenever a strong temptation, combined with the chances 
of concealment, occurs, there will be an inevitable indulgence of 
the natural and inherent propensity to commit crime. 

A very large proportion of all the calamities which fall on 
man come from the crafty, adroit, secret, and relentless perpe- 
trations of persons with these moral obliquities. 

One of these predominating propensities of man is for place 
and power. 

His intolerant vanity will not stoop to hold talk with the 
common herd, as he considers them; but he will obtain power 
over them by fraud or force; and riot in their control and go- 

The fierce and unsatisfied lust for this indulgence has in all 
times convulsed the world, and maintained a perpetual conflict 
between oppression and liberty. 

The political institutions of the United States have inter- 
posed effectual barriers against these abuses also ; but still there 
are everywhere the most insolent attempts made to pervert these 
constitutional safeguards against aristocracy into fraudulent 
excuses for unblushing acts of treason. 

Happily, the periodical elections frustrate these artful schemes ; 
and thus these pernicious and fearful aggressions have been 
principally confined to the odious and disgusting demonstrations 
of what is called a moneyed aristocracy. 

Nothing can be so precarious or uncertain as riches. No- 
thing but slavery has ever so largely contributed to demoralize 
the character and enervate the energies of man ; and nothing 
possesses so few inducements to excite envy or regret for the 
want of it. 

If money is obtained by inheritance, marriage, accident, or 
fraud, or by any means but by industry, the passion for in- 
dulgence is generally too strong for the dictates of discretion ; 
by fast living, the holder will soon be where he was before he 
got it — an object of derision and contempt to others, useless to 


himself and society, while it lasts; and debauched and mined 
for the rest of his life. 

If he has obtained it by his own labor and economy, he will 
not feel its worth, except for necessaries, and its useful and law- 
ful employment. 

The commendable habits of frugality, which earned and 
saved, will not waste it, or suffer the owner to be abused by its 

Few have suddenly acquired large fortunes by the ordinary 
course of honest industry. Thi3 is the result of desperate ad- 
ventures, made without labor or capital, and at the risk of 
others; by which patient honesty is blunted, bad appetites are 
encouraged, the true use and value of money are lost sight of, 
extravagance is indulged, new schemes for gain are perpetrated; 
and the drama closes with wasted means and wreck of cha- 

Every sensible person may detect these gambling adventurers, 
however genteel or plausible, by watching their progress, and 
testing their developments with the plain and unerring reali- 
ties of life. 

Instead of wishing for such leisure and luxury, we should 
scorn its wickedness, and reprobate its infamous examples. 

What is called respectable mercantile employment so largely 
partakes of everything opposed to the pure character, and cer- 
tain results, of patient labor — so much of hazard, extravagance, 
disaster, and loss of reputation — as to rebuke down the restless 
aspirations for intemperate and irrational indulgences, and bring 
the uneasy judgment to a settled level of absolute conviction, 
in the solemn fact, that all security for the morals and the com- 
forts of life is lost the instant we leave the beaten paths of 
constant and contented toil. 

The aged and decrepit nurse of a female ward, at an infirm- 
ary, near Philadelphia, was, but a few years since, the brilliant 
bride of a proud and successful jobber in stocks and lands, who 
died in the Almshouse. 

The heads of two of the largest mercantile houses in the 
United States, whose means and credit are unbounded, pay 
their fathers' board, in obscure villages, who once were princes 
upon 'Change, and are now poor and forgotten. 

Twenty years will twice change every sign, and abolish every 
firm, in any city in the world. 

In a lecture delivered at Boston in 1848, by General Dear- 


born, he stated that he had ascertained, by consulting the re- 
collections of the oldest merchants, and the banks, the probate 
office, and the books of the Custom House, that ninet} r -seven 
out of every one hundred persons who obtained their livelihood 
by, or pursued the business of buying and selling, failed, and 
died insolvent. 

There should be nothing in the vacillating and perilous for- 
tunes of these classes of men to excite the envy, or nettle the 
pride, of the poor; and he who acquires wealth, if he appreciates 
its use, generally does more good than evil with it. 

Respectable rich men are careful to avoid the appearances of 
superiority on that account, and maintain rigid habits of fru- 
gality and industry to the last. 

Those who are not respectable, whether rich or poor, ought 
not to hold any influence, or be so regarded as to suffer their 
conduct to hurt our feelings, or disturb our composure. 

The independent spirit of every man should firmly keep its 
place, and not be ruffled or disturbed by vulgar insolence or 
vapid ostentation. 

It is not therefore money, beyond its proper and reasonable 
use, that constitutes happiness, or creates any real distinctions 
in society. 

Intellect, wisdom, industry, and integrity are the only dis- 
tinctions which should be recognized amongst men; and ac- 
cording to the political creed of the people of the United States, 
they constitute the only standards of moral and conventional 

It may not be deemed inappropriate here to give some illus- 
trations of the artificial sources, and criminal character, of a 
very large proportion of the persons who, in every community, 
assume the bearing and affectation of wealth and consideration, 
to explain the sophistries and deceptions of what is called the 
aristocracy of high life; and to contrast its degraded and pre- 
carious realities with the elements of true merit and pure honor. 

These pungent applications are founded in truth. 

One of the most insolent and aristocratic fungous patricians 
that ever floated in the United States, with immense revenue, 
equipage, cushioned pulpit-pew, gorgeous palace, splendid cha- 
teau, with parks and ponds, upon the river bank — extensive 
connections; lived to have children grown up, settled, on the 



bench, president of bank, in Congress, &c. &c. — began the 
world as a journeyman carpenter; where from, or of what pa- 
ternity, no one ever knew. 

Too lazy to work, and with a depraved taste, better suited 
for groveling brutality and crime than honest labor, he be- 
came the door-keeper and ticket-vender for the ball-room of an 
old French bawd; married her dissolute, illegitimate daughter; 
inherited her estates; turned genteel, and intrigued himself and 
his chaste spouse up into the artificial regions of mushroom ar- 
rogance and aristocracy. 

In 1813, the Secretary of the Home Department in England 
was waited on by a Quaker lady of manifest intelligence and 
respectability, who requested the favor of a private interview. 
The time for which was fixed, when she informed the secre- 
tary that she was the wife of a gentleman, whom she named, 
who was born in London, and, in 1780, when he was about 
thirty years old, emigrated to the United States, where he mar- 
ried her; that they had eight children, all grown and married, 
were in opulent circumstances, and enjoyed good reputation. 

She stated that her husband desired to visit London for three 
or four months, and had sent her to get his permission. 

His reason for this special request was that some unfavora- 
ble reports had been circulated about him at the time he left 
England, and he thought it best not to rely on a general pass- 
port, which he could get from the government of the United 
States, as he had been for many years naturalized in that 

A very full inquiry was made by the secretary as to his per- 
son, the ship he went to the United States in, where he lived, 
&c, all of which she most promptly answered, so far as she 
knew; and she was told to call upon a day that was named 
for an answer. 

At the time named, she called, and was politely told by a 
clerk that he was directed to inform her that her request could 
not be granted. 

She begged to know the reason, and was told that no reason 
had been given. 

She then desired to speak to the secretary, and was admitted. 
With great excitement, she implored him, not so much to grant 
her request, as for an explanation of the cause for its refusal. 

The secretary expressed regret that she had taken so much 
interest in a matter which could not now be of much import- 


ancc to her, considering her great age, the settlement of her 
children, and the safe and respectable condition of her husband. 

She replied that these were the causes of her anxiety. 

" To have spent my life," said she, " in peace and outward 
honor, with a man whose dreams, mysterious connections, cau- 
tious formalities of speech, frequent and unexplained absences, 
and profusion of wealth, have made him an object of wonder 
and fear, was nothing compared to the horror of having borne 
him six sons and two daughters, all of whom are married, and 
have children ; and every one of whom covertly maintains the 
same cold obscurity of character and conduct secretly with him. 

" My sons' wiws, and my daughters' husbands," she con- 
tinued, "are involved in the same perplexity. I, therefore, 
urge your lordship to relax the ceremonies of your high sta- 
tion, and compassionately give me a solution of this afflicting 
and mysterious affair." 

The secretary replied that it was wholly out of his power 
to give her information that would mitigate her suspicions, and 
he feared that the whole disclosure might increase them; that 
he would have a written statement prepared, which he would 
hand to her, upon the express condition that she would not 
unseal it until she reached home. She accepted the required 
terms, obtained the paper, repressed her restless curiosity, and 
faithfully kept her promise. 

Upon reaching her home, she encountered the calm and reso- 
lute eye of her husband, and told him all that had occurred, ex- 
cept her own part of the embassy. This was the first time she 
had ever dissimulated to him, and his searching scrutiny de- 
tected her prevarication. When he asked her if she had asked 
the secretary why he refused the request, and she said " No !" 
he replied, " That is a lie !" and left the room. 

She convened her sons' wives and her daughters' husbands, 
and broke the seal, and read as follows : — 

" His name is not Jones: it is John Kingston. His father 
is not known ; his mother was a hatchet and bag-woman — a 
common beggar and thief of St. Giles. He and one Jonathan 
Matthews ostensibly kept a conveyancer's office in the Strand. 
They were secretly connected with numerous and extensive 
frauds and robberies. They were trailed, got wind of our pur- 
suit, and fled. They pass by forged names, and have been, all 
their lives, engaged with an immense gang of the most adroit 
and successful villains. 


"Their associations are numerous and extensive; they all 
maintain genteel appearances ; pretend to pursue some respect- 
able employment ; have families ; educate their children; give 
their sons professions; move in genteel society; mix themselves 
with business, politics, and religion. 

" They are clergymen, bishops, judges, sheriffs, prothono- 
taries, members of Congress, and State legislators, officers in the 
army and navy, directors, cashiers, and presidents of banks; 
and one of them is now attached to a legation from the United 
States on the Continent. 

"They maintain covert confederation with pirates, assassins, 
robbers, and forgers ; give them succor, shelter, and aid ; and 
share the fruits of these marauders. 

" The secrets of merchants, bankers, navies, armies, and 
governments are thus sapped and used for the purposes of dark 
and astounding frauds. 

"They revel in silent and secret crimes, poison, forgery, 
swindling, robbery, and arson. 

" They are seldom detected : and, when caught, the most 
consummate and artful requisitions, and incredible auxiliary 
appliances of secret personal influence, intrigue, corruption, 
and bribery, are employed to strangle prosecutions, obtain ver- 
dicts of acquittal, disagreements of juries, new trials, arrest and 
reversal of judgments, rescues, escapes, and pardons. 

" They can prove anything, and raise any funds. 

" They are base-born, and their hearts are at open war with 
all honest men. 

" Their breed never reforms or regenerates, but the subtle- 
ties of its moral pollutions increase, as it descends through the 
blood to their issue, with the certainty of reptile tenacity. 

"They have cabalistic signals, signs, words, and hierogly- 
phics. They swarm all over the United States, and cover the 
face of the whole world." 

Returning to the political thread of this discussion, it is re- 
marked that, however the local institutions of some of the 
States have established political privileges in the landed and 
other property qualifications for suffrage and for office, these 
are all obnoxious to the free and equal principles avowed and 
proclaimed by most of the State charters, and which constitute 
the very essence of their national compact. 

It is now the acknowledged and unalterable law of this 
western hive of mind, your business republicans, established by 


charters, sound good sense, universal public opinion, and the 
all-controlling power of imperial fashion, that there shall no- 
where be tolerated or allowed, however harmless or innocent, 
the slightest pretensions to the feudal aristocracy of Europe, or 
any other distinctions by the possession of riches. 

There is an intimate and close sympathy of interest and feel- 
ing with all honest men, whether rich or poor. 

In this view, poverty and riches are indifferent and immate- 
rial considerations. 

The compact of society does not rest on money, but on the 
necessity for safety and right ; there are conspiracies by those 
without capital to monopolize trade ; but rich men are generally 
shy of connections by which their money will be controlled by 

To realize an indemnity for necessaries, the maintenance, 
education, and settling out of children, and the comforts of age, 
can be accomplished, in some calling or employment, by patient 
industry, cautious dealings, temperate living, and the active 
and manly use of our faculties. 

More than this, is labor wasted ; it sates the proper rational 
appetite, and leads to avarice, the moth of quiet age. 

The instance of a mere soldier, or military chieftain, assum- 
ing political power, is rare. In the United States, it has not 

They sometimes shrink from it, even when it is offered to 

Wellington was evidently surprised when first spoken to of 
the premiership. 

General Taylor was certainly sincere when he said, in reply 
to his first invitation to the presidency, that he was but a sol- 
dier, and unfit for the duties of that office. 

Bolivar was a pure patriot. Nicholas was born a despot. 

Napoleon is the only civilized modern instance of a man 
who has held with force the sword in one hand, and the scep- 
tre in the other. 

In the United States, this would be absurd temerity and 

At Paulus Hook, General Washington in scorn denounced 
the proposal for military treason. 

General Jackson, and General Taylor, in the course of their 


elections, conducted themselves with marked delicacy and de- 

Their nominations were made, and their elections attained, 
by the people, without their interference. They were, neither 
of them, charged with improper efforts for their election. 

The other military gentlemen of the Revolution, of the wars 
of 1812, and the last war, have maintained distinguished and 
elevated positions in the community for learning, professional 
skill, bravery, and lofty patriotism. 

There is not an instance in which they have compromised 
their purity and dignity by private defection or public inter- 

The country has resolved upon a strong and splendid naval 
establishment for the protection of her immense sea coast, her 
numerous harbors, and her commercial marine, and to sustain 
her national rank with foreign powers : a policy which should 
be liberally and sedulously fostered. 

It has been a proud and gallant arm of public power, with 
strong sinews of moral energy, and chivalrous triumphs upon 
the land and sea. 

It is scattered all over the world ; its sphere is upon the 
ocean ; and its officers and crews only come along shore to 
taste the cup of home. 

All a sailor wants is an open sea, fair fight, and victory; this 
a Yankee tar always gets. He abuses and libels no one ; he 
joins no riots, to murder and burn ; he brawls and bullies about 
at no fires, political gatherings, elections, or torch-light pro- 

He belongs to no scrubby combinations of jobbers and swin- 
dlers to rob and plunder the people by corporation conspiracies, 
shin-plaster thefts, and legislative and executive corporations. 

The liberties of no country were ever betrayed by its sailors; 
nor its morals debauched by their avarice, peculation, or law- 
less ambition. 

The United States cannot, under the present system, ever 
have their liberties disturbed by standing armies, because they 
are not suffered. 

Recent occasions have demonstrated that American soldiers 
can learn the art of fighting and victory so well, in a few weeks, 
as to conquer a nation, return home, lay down their arms, and 
scatter to their homes, in peace and good order. 


So that there never can be an aristocracy in the United 
States such as has cursed and degraded other parts of the 
world ; and there never will be, in the United States, orders of 
nobility, with perpetual and oppressive hereditary privileges 
and offices, forced upon the people by irresponsible sovereigns, 
with large salaries, and tyrannical power. 

The only aristocracy with which they now are and ever will 
be scourged, is the swarm of depraved and restless scoundrels, 
of all classes and ages, from the ragged urchin to the brawling 
fireman and mob bully; from the petty ward-meeting pimp 
and spy up to the audacious leaders of faction ; from the dri- 
veling petitioner for a detestable money corporation up to the 
pompous and bloated bank director; from the footpad note- 
shaver up to the audacious gambler in stocks and exchange. 

This is the fungus of society; these are cormorants that suck 
out the rich blood of the people; the sly and smooth faced hypo- 
crites, who pretend to morals and religion, and shop-lift their 
neighbors' goods ; who burn, mob, and murder, defy the law, scoff 
at religion, insult all honest men, frequent groggeries, brothels, 
and gambling-houses, make tumults and riots, and degrade and 
profane all law, order, peace, and honor. 

Who never earn a dollar; abuse those who will work; and 
live off of other people's labor; and envy and hate, despise and 
persecute every decent man ; and are devoured by remorse ; feel 
an abject sense of contempt and horror for themselves; and fear 
the presence of virtuous men : who take pleasure in a constant 
course of insult, secret defamation, and robbery, to revenge 
themselves for the contempt with which they are regarded by 

These are the vile materials from which aristocracy is formed 
in all countries; and if these villains had a chance in the United 
States, they would all be kings, princes, dukes, and noblemen ; 
and their ignorant and vulgar wives and daughters would be 
the orthodox and legitimate marchionesses and peeresses of the 

The depredations and agrarian villainies of this infamous 
horde will not cease to disgrace and convulse the people of the 
United States until all penitentiaries are demolished; and riot, 
swindling, conspiracy, and gambling, are made felony. 

Until all crimes are punished by the stock, the thong, the 
knife, the red-hot iron, for the first offence; and with the gibbet 
for a second perpetration, without reprieve or pardon. 


These wholesome good old punishments would keep cowardly 
rascals quiet; extinguish the resolute scoundrels; and, in due 
time, purge off the bad blood of the body politic, and leave the 
remaining circulation free from malignant and spasmodic fren- 

It would discourage the obtrusion of demagogues and fac- 
tionists, and contribute to the establishment of a rule for the 
honest selection of faithful and competent persons for the public 
confidence and favor. 

"For who shall go about 
To cozen fortune, and be honorable, 
Without the stamp of merit! Let none presume 
To wear an undeserved dignity. 
O that estates, degrees, and offices 
Were not derived corruptly! and that clear honor 
Were purchased by the merit of the wearer? 
How many then should cover that stand bare? 
How many be commanded that command? 
How much low peasantry would then be glean'd 
From the true seed of honor? and how much honor 
Picked from the chaff and ruin of the times. 

(Merchant of Venice, Act ii., S. 9.) 

An explanation of the sources and causes of the depravities 
adverted to may be further understood by a slight reference to 
the original and germinating character of the mind and the 

Their development in the social and conventional relations 
produces the diversified shades, conditions, and arbitrary distinc- 
tions already described. 

The heart, in its primitive state, is under no selfish feelings ; 
but is impulsive, social, and guileless. 

Children, women, and those in the rural and unsophisticated 
spheres of life, have no secrets or notions of inequality. In 
sickness and affliction, they mutually sympathize; in health and 
prosperity, they help and share with each other; and in joy. 
and mirth, with unaffected emotions of sincerity and kindness, 
they join in reciprocations of artless interest and love. It does 
not occur to them that the peace and honor of society can be 
promoted by unmeaning and artificial distinctions, established 
by arbitrary customs ; that human happiness is attained and 
secured by shutting the door of social hospitality in the face of 
all who may not be born within, or married into, the capricious 
circle formed by their frigid despotism ; and that purity of heart 


and life, and the light of thought and soul, are not the richest 
attributes of Heaven's holy aristocracy. 

But when the passions are wakened up by worldly excite- 
ment, all the kind and generous inclinations are displaced by 
cupidity, pride, and selfishness. 

Usages, laws, and customs, which are written in no book, or 
recorded upon any tablet, are then arbitrarily ordained and un- 
justly enforced without warning or explanation, and all the 
world required to submit to their insolent prescriptions without 
a murmur. 

Can any one tell who made the law, or explain the reason for 
its authority; that a palace or coach should be more respected 
than a cottage or an ox-cart ? why the proud and the rich should 
be more esteemed than the poor and the humble ? 

"\\ hy arrogance is genteel, and humility degrading? why 
idleness is tolerated, and labor neglected ? why licentiousness 
is winked at, and purity is doubted ; extravagance encouraged, 
and economy sneered at ; temperance ridiculed, and drunken- 
ness pitied; swindling excused, and honesty questioned ? why 
rudeness, cruelty, extortion, oppression, fraud, and violence are 
favored and suffered instead of being universally and indignantly 
condemned ? 

The explanation is found in the arrogance by which the self- 
ish spirit of man excuses and sanctions, as lawful and right, 
that which most accommodates his depraved and secret appe- 

Municipal laws are so exposed to evasions as to render them 
almost useless; while the arbitrary dictations of the most sordid 
and sinister passions are obeyed with servile obedience. 

However we affect to prefer good to evil, all the secret im- 
pulses are bad; and their indulgence is allowed just as oppor- 
tunity occurs, or recklessness prevails. 

In the exercise of these inclinations, there is no constraint 
but the conscience; if that is weak, or discouraged, there is no 
motive to govern but policy. 

Those who hold the power promulgate these arbitrary laws; 
and those who are not supreme yield to the dictations of their 
superiors from necessity, policy, and fear; and, also, because 
that which is wrong really suits their wishes best; and so that 
they in their turn may employ the same oppressions upon those 
under them. 

Immense numbers acquiesce for peace's sake, and from sheer 


ignorance, feeling and acting upon the notion that those who 
are better off, and have more impudence than they, must 
know more, and are in the right. So that, from a combination 
of these and other causes, society is scourged by a code of des- 
potic and vacillating edicts, infinitely more stringent and severe 
than the acknowledged and written laws of God and man. 

What people say and think is held to be fundamentally right, 
without the least regard to justice or honor. And, as the bad, 
and not the good propensities govern, so must those opinions, 
prejudices, and rules, which spring from these sources, be most 
fashionable, acceptable, and popular. 

The municipal law forbids swindling, dueling, and gambling. 
The law of public opinion upholds and encourages them. 

If the restraints and penalties of the laws of God and man 
are evaded by trick and fraud, the popular exultation breaks 
out in shouts of joy; while he who refuses to accept or challenge 
to fight with deadly weapons is denounced as a poltroon and a 
coward; and those who refuse to consort with fashionable rogues 
and genteel gamesters are sneered at, and put in Coventry, as 
vulgar clodhoppers. [The three last points referred to are dis- 
cussed in Chapter XVIII.] 

From these pernicious and imperious influences, there has 
been in all ages a prevalence of the most destructive and scan- 
dalous aristocracies. 

They are distinguished, first, by a race of robbers and mur- 
derers, who ride rough-shod over all law, and seat themselves 
on thrones, and rule with fire and sword. 

They summon to their ready service myriads of kindred 
fiends, with power to hold perpetual feudal sway; sweating the 
earth, and scourging man and beast, to feed their gluttony and 

Then follows the aristocracy of politics, with its immense 
train of love-sick patriots, brawling senators, crafty ministers of 
state, cunning ambassadors, hungry office-seekers, and corrupt 
and tyrannical office-holders, who lie, lounge, plunder, and be- 

Next are seen the Shylocks of mammon, dealers, peddlers, 
stock and corporation jobbers, who inflate the world with frauds, 
and villauies, and infest it with ignorance, debauchery, madness, 
beggary, and crime. 

These are closely pursued by a pernicious flock of rooks, bats, 
vultures, and kites, with swarms of vermin, reptiles, and human 


monsters, decorated with dazzling and glittering pageantry, 
flaunting to the high heavens gorgeous banners, radiant with 
riches, power, and splendor. They startle up the bewildered 
world with soft and thrilling raptures, and hold them, by mys- 
terious spells and charms, in agonies of sensual transport and 
brutal lust. They wield the magic sceptre of universal fashion, 
and wear the imperial crown of popular and facinorous sway; 
and their oracles speak from the Gods of Moloch and Sodom. 

These faint and imperfect hints may serve to touch the per- 
plexed heart with profitable thoughts, and warn the baffled 
soul to mark, detect, and shun the poisonous ground, the 
rancorous roots, the upas trees, and fungi fruits, that blight 
and blast man's peace and hope on earth— 

Accursed Aristocracy ! 



Those for and against it violent — No slavery lawful — God made all men 
free — No human power can authorize it — Abstract law — The law of, in 
the United States, discussed — Are slaves property ? — The District of Co- 
lumbia — In the territories of the United Slates — In new States — Of fugi- 
tive slaves, remedy. 

"All men are created equal." — Declaration of Independence. 

The advocates and adversaries of slavery reciprocate vitupe- 
rations so degrading as to banish all decent auditors. 

No man can hear their fierce personal onsets, and their foul 
and vulgar language, without disgust. 

One set is proscribed and accused as auctioneers in human 
flesh ; and the other as mad and wilful conspirators for fire 
and murder. 

No allowances are made for the force of education and ne- 
cessity on one side, nor for excitement and fervor on the other. 

Both claim for themselves the purest, and deny to each other 
the slightest, motives of sincerity. 

The abolitionists charge the slaver with pagan infidelity; 
while they, in turn, are charged with stirring up revolt, and 
encouraging bloodshed and desolation. 

Nothing can be so absurd as to hear a slave-driver profess- 
ing or holding forth the pure examples of our Saviour; or to 
hear a fanatical and abusive amalgamationist making impious 
appeals to his Maker. 

The result is that but little true light is obtained from these 
sources, as is always the case with those who quarrel, or who 
make a trade or an agony of what they practice. 

If all they say of each other is true or false, it boots not ; 
for the merits or demerits, the right or wrong, of human bond- 
age is a question by itself, which belongs to the conscience ; 
and there, within the secret and solemn meditations of the 
soul, it must be decided. 


Very little lias been spoken or published on either side ex- 
cept by politicians and fanatics. It is now proposed to submit 
a few impartial observations for the candid and serious consi- 
deration of the sober-minded of all parties. 

No human laws or penalties ever reformed a man; they may 
deter, but cannot convert ; they harden, but do not tame ; they 
heat up hatred, not love. 

Man, bent on mischief, does not pause to debate anything 
but success and fear. 

If he has no conscience, or if bis bad propensities predomi- 
nate over his good impulses, he takes his will, as cupidity and 
hope lead on. 

If he is truly upright in his views, unless weak and sorely 
tempted, he will not deliberately sin ; and no intelligent man, 
under the control of a pure, free conscience, was ever engaged 
in slavery. 

This assertion is put flat and bold, without harsh language; 
it is an abstract position, an element in morals and mental phi- 
losophy which is true or false ; it cannot be dodged ; its test 
is found in the character and nature of slavery. 

Negro or pagan slavery is no more lawful than white or Christ- 
ian slavery. 

As to this, it is a mere point of power; there are, perhaps, 
as many whites who have been slaves to others as blacks who 
have been held by whites. It is an abstract question of right, 
and not power; war and conquest, in no case, can give a right 
to do more than vindicate wrongs, by indemnity for losses in 
property, and to retaliate upon the enemy within the limits of 
primary and natural laws. Victors, perhaps, in vindication, 
might burn or confiscate property, or slay their enemies; these 
retaliations are allowed, it is said, under the rule "ex necessi- 
tate rei." 

It is averred that they are within the range of things natural ; 
but a conqueror certainly would have no right to do an unna- 
tural thing, even for retribution. He would have no right, 
even if it were for retaliation, to deliver his prisoners over to 
cannibals or sodomites, because this is unnatural; and, for the 
same reason, he would have no right to put them in personal 
slavery, for this is against the law of nature. 

By martial or political bondage here, is not meant a restraint 
of civil liberty, which is partial and temporary, but personal 
slavery. This is unnatural; everything is unnatural which is 



repugnant to the harmony of creation ; and, upon the dawn of 
that day which completed the consummation of creation, there 
were primary and fundamental instincts, moved, animated, and 
proclaimed, which the wicked and fallen, with perverted pro- 
pensities, ever since then have constantly violated, but have 
never denied. 

Millions have brutalized their souls by fiendish gluttony on 
human flesh; and millions have polluted and despoiled their 
holy image in God by sodomy. For this revolting desecration 
of nature's laws, cities have been melted into burning lakes by 
just and indignant wrath. 

The human family, still a race with fixed and similar indica- 
tions, however various in mind and complexion, was, by its first 
great father and proxy, Adam, placed in the garden free; no 
other animal was made free; he alone was given, personally 
and intimately, face to face, to understand his Creator. God 
talked to and communed with him, and explained this to him, 
and told him lie was free, and that he was placed over every- 
thing else; not over his own seed, but over everything else. 

Every child of Adam had this heritage, and no more; it 
was enough. Adam's dominions descended to his children by 
inheritance, to be divided off" by occupaucy, and held in just 

This law has undergone no change; God alone holds a na- 
tural right over man ; the children of Adam never held a natural 
right over each other ; nor any other right, except a power for 
redress for crimes, or the political rights surrendered under civil 
compacts for defence and protection, and as unavoidably incident 
thereto. Perhaps, also, they fall in jeopardy when communi- 
ties conflict. 

^ But their personal rights are never lawfully invaded by 
civilized men; none but savages and robbers have trenched upon 
the personal rights of a prisoner of war. These have ever been 
held sacred. 

It is as unnatural to force a fellow-creature to surrender his 
mind, labor, and liberty, to our cupidity and avarice, as it is to 
demand his person for unnatural lust. 

Cupidity and avarice are in the same category with sodomy; 
they are all equally unreasonable, unjust, beastly, brutal, and 

_ Many wild animals, the dove and the deer, for example, are 
timid and innocent : there arc other wild animals who prey upon 


all other animals, including themselves; but man goes one step 
farther than any other animal : for he not only uses and devours 
the bodies of every living thing, but uses and enslaves the souls 
and bodies of his fellow-man ; and, as if maddened to frenzy by 
this fiendish indulgence, he forges a chain, and hooks it to the 
leg of every child born from his slave, as if they are not created 
free in the womb, in the same image, and by the same Almighty 
power which made Adam from the ground. 

Every decent, honest man, with frank spirit, and free soul, 
will ratify, by impulse, these plain and irrefragable axioms. 

Where, then, is the authority, or excuse, for slavery ? No- 
where; and there never was a true, disinterested, unprejudiced 
man, that seriously pretended or claimed for it any sound ele- 
ment of right. 

It begins with the open audacity of the cut-throat pirate, who 
steals and sells his fellow-men; who disclaims and repudiates all 
morals and all laws; who sinks or swims, lives or dies, upon his 
hellish lust for gain. 

Here, and thus, it all begins; there is no man, however de- 
based, that is not ashamed to avow this fiendish crime. It finds 
no law or sanction in its origin, and the participators are just 
as destitute of excuse as the first thieves from whom they obtain 
their felonious spoils. 

It is in vain for them to whine out the sniffling and con- 
temptible sophism of the bandit's son, and that it was cast on 
them by inheritance. 

There is no moral or legal difference between a horse-thief 
and a kidnapper. 

Suppose a slaveholder was innocently to buy a stolen horse, 
could he pretend to have any better title to him than the original 
thief had? Certainly not. And where is the distinction in prin- 
ciple between a stolen horse and a stolen man ? None, except 
this, that property may be lawfully held in a dumb beast; 
whereas, by the laws of nature and of God, no property can be 
had in a human being. 

The speculations upon the mental and animal influences pro- 
duced by the necessities to which the human race have been 
exposed are curious and highly interesting. 

The distinctions of color will be found to have but little to 
do with the arrogance and oppression of man towards his fellow- 
man : ignorance, brutality, and might have alternately swayed 
the iron sceptre of slavery; and even now, amidst the lights of 


reason and religion, power finds for its usurpation abundant 
excuse and subterfuge in the plausible and plastic prevarica- 
tions of cupidity. 

The January number, 1850, of the Westminster Review con- 
tains a strong and independent view of this subject. 

It is the most radical of all the British reviews, yet its tone, 
in this article, is singularly mild, candid, and comprehensive. 
It discusses the entire question of slavery, and the best means 
of emancipation, and this with a breadth of thought and spirit 
of world-wide humanity such as we see in few journals on this 
side of the Atlantic. Yet the positions of the Review would 
startle what are here called abolitionists. In a word, the lie- 
view regards slavery as a transition state, inevitable to a race 
of lower condition, when brought into collision with one of 
higher civilization ; a state, however, that must cease, either 
peaceably or by revolution, when the serf reaches a certain 
point in intellectual progress. It argues this from the history 
of vassalage in all ages and countries. Against the immediate 
abolition of slavery, under all circumstances, it takes decided 
ground, asserting that this is a question to be determined by 
political and social considerations. On this point, it remarks: — 

"In the history of the world, there is no record of any people 
having existed as a free nation, without having first submitted 
to the baptism of slavery ; and that of some of the nations of 
Europe is even yet not complete. The serfdom of the Middle 
Ages still exists among the Sclavonic and Sarmatian races. The 
mass of the people who took part in the late Polish, Gallician, 
and Hungarian insurrections were serfs, struggling less for 
constitutional forms of government than for personal liberty. 
Twenty millions of the population of Russia are serfs. A 
tradesman at St. Petersburg and Moscow is often a person who 
pays a license-fee to a nobleman for permission to buy and 
sell, or divides with his owner the profits of a business. 

"In this, there is nothing discouraging to a hopeful philoso- 
phy, although much to demonstrate the folly of philanthropic 
impatience. Slavery is the law of the strongest ; and it is only 
by the law of the strongest that the mind, in its uninformed 
state, can become disciplined to that obedience to rule and pre- 
cept which lays the foundation of all government. A child is 
a slave. However Trind its parents, it has to begin life with 
the duty of submission. Before it acquires the power of self- 
guidance, it has to resign itself to the guidance of others. The 


history of the infancy of nations we may trace in the present 
state of every barbarous tribe with which the modern spirit of 
geographical research has made us acquainted. It was that of 
rude^ clans of wandering families, continually plundering and 
fighting, killing, and sometimes eating each other. 

" The discovery that prisoners taken in battle might be made 
useful as servants was the first great advance towards social 
organization. Out of this grew the discovery of the important 
results to be achieved by a division of labor and combination 
of effort ; and out of this, again, grew a knowledge of the arts ; 
the comforts and luxuries of wealth, and that taste for them 
which has made the comforts and luxuries, once confined to a 
few, the property, in civilized communities, of the many; a vil- 
lage peasant in England being, probably, now often better 
clothed and lodged than any one of the nine kings who fought 
together in the vale of Sodom, in the days of Abraham. 

' ' These considerations may suggest a reasonable doubt whether 
the advocates of sudden and immediate abolition — those who 
would extinguish slavery at a blow, and who have succeeded in 
their attempts so to extinguish it in many parts of the world, 
do not take as fallacious a view of the true interests of humani- 
ty as those who, in the opposite extreme, will hear of no com- 
promise of what they call their rights of property, and refuse 
the slave the power of his own self-redemption. 

" There is no relation between the case of a born slave or a 
born savage, and the citizen of a free state kidnapped by a 
piratical cruiser and sold into slavery. In the latter case, im- 
mediate abolition is the direct and proper means of restoring 
him the place in society which he is qualified to hold ; the 
former is that of an ignorant creature, to whom society has 
been a blank, and whose own resources may utterly fail to pre- 
vent his rapidly relapsing into a state of barbarism. We 
do not change the nature of things by the change of names. 
We may declare any person free we* please, but we do not 
thereby suddenly infuse into his mind the ideas of a free man, 
or give him a free man's aspirations. If slavery, by a miracle, 
were abolished to-morrow throughout the continent of Africa, 
are we sure that the slaves emancipated would not, the very 
next day, begin to make slaves of each other ? What is cer- 
tain is that the progress of free institutions must always be 
governed by the process of knowledge ; liberty can only bo 
maintained when its value is appreciated and understood. Tho 


experience of Hayti is conclusive on that point. Hayti lias not 
only been a prey to intestine divisions of the most sanguinary 
character, but its government has had to embody, in a code 
rural, the severest laws for the suppression of vagrancy ; and 
every trace of free government in that country has now van- 
ished in the despotism of a mock empire." 

On the subject of the inferiority of the negro race — a ques- 
tion often mooted — the reviewer appears to take sides with those 
who hold, as the Bible explicitly asserts, that the human race is 
descended from one common parent, and that the African and the 
Caucasian differ only in consequence of having lived, for ages, 
in different climates, and under different conditions of civiliza- 
tion. He contends, therefore, that the black can in time bo 
rendered as intelligent as the white." 

The secret inducement for slavery is the same savage pro- 
pensity that incites to gluttony, drunkenness, rape, sodomy, 
rapine, murder, and eating human flesh; and which stimulates 
parents to denounce their children for crimes, and Burking and 
strangling them to get them out of their way. 

These impulses spring from the brutal and fiendish lust which 
characterizes the monsters of creation ; and which, in this re- 
spect, constitutes the connecting link between them and man, as 
a part of the animal world, and as a part of the mysterious law 
of affinity and gradation, passing from the Supreme Author of 
all things down to the most insignificant and minute produc- 
tions of his infinite wisdom and power. 

There is the most elaborate and profound research and learn- 
ing, interesting history, and curious statistics, together with all 
the well-settled and acknowledged law upon the subject of slav- 
ery, to be found in the Rev. Albert Barnes' Inquiry into the 
Scriptural Views of Slavery; the Rev. Theodore Parker's 
Letter to the People of the United States; and in the case of 
the Antelope, 10th vol. of Wheaton's Reports of the Decisions 
of the Supreme Court of the United States, page 66; and in 
the Appendix to said volume. 


The legal toleration, or permission, to hold slaves in the 
United States is exclusively controlled by the local laws of the 

There is no authority for it derived from any expressions in 
the Constitution. 


They are all directly against it, viz.: "The citizens of each 
State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of 
citizens in the several States." — (Article 4, Section 2 (1).) 

" The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall 
not be construed to deny, or disparage others retained by the 
people." (Article 9, Amendments to the Constitution.) 

" The powers not delegated to the United States by the Con- 
stitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the 
States respectively, or to the people." — (Ibid., Article 10.) 

These are strong and absolute expressions of reservation, ex- 
clusive as to things not named, and of restriction as to the 
things which were named by the Constitution. 

The only expressions in it which in any respect refer to this 
subject obviously and designedly shun the most distant or re- 
mote sanction of slavery. They are as follows : — 

"Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among 
the several States which may be included within this Union, 
according to their respective numbers; which shall be deter- 
mined by adding to the whole number of free persons, exclud- 
ing those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding 
Indians not taxed, three-fifths of all other persons." — (Article 
1, Section 2 (3).) 

'•'The migration or importation of such persons as any of the 
States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be 
prohibited by Congress prior to the year 1808; but a tax or a 
duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding $10 
for each person." — (Section 9.) 

"No person held to service or labor in one State, under the 
laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of 
any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service 
or labor, but shall be delivered up, on claim of the party to 
whom such service or labor may be due." — (Article 4, Sec- 
tions 2, 3.) 

The right to hold slaves was passed over; and, however re- 
pugnant to the free men of the North, that every five slaves 
should have a vote equal to three free white men, and that too 
by proxy in the hands of their masters, making now twenty 
slave representatives in Congress, and twenty electors for Pre- 
sident and Vice-President against free white men, still, this too 
is to be borne. 

Congress has no more power to impose or force slavery on a 


new State, asking for admission into the Union, than it has to 
force the Free States to assume and allow slavery. 

When the Declaration of Independence was made, Massachu- 
setts held that the words " all men are created equal" abolished 
slavery in that State, " ipso facto." They were undoubtedly 
right : and this rule of action should have been then adopted by 
all the States. 

It is said that slavery has pernicious morals and social in- 
fluences upon the master; that it makes him idle, debauched, 
arrogant, and cruel ; and that there cannot be a more thorough 
aristocrat than a slaveholder. This will not be contradicted, 
perhaps, by any one not engaged in some way in this degrad- 
ing business. 

Slavery in all its aspects is revolting, and should be abo- 


The people have title to their lands as tenants in fee, and, 
as inherent to their national power, they have the right to re- 
fuse to receive into their political union the inhabitants of any 
of their lands, and all others who demand fellowship and pro- 
tection, upon terms which they disapprove. 

The omission to abolish slavery in all the States by the 
Constitution was no precedent for the future affirmation or 
sanction of slavery. This is demanding for a negative, or an 
act not done, the force of an act that is done. 

If the Slave States had allowed polygamy, and the children 
of their unlawful wives had been capable of inheritance there, 
and this had been passed over by the Constitution — when a 
new State asked for admission into the Union, if it was pro- 
posed to curtail it of this oriental indulgence, with the same 
reason it might be urged that, because the Constitution had 
not noticed this local immorality, all the States had thereby 
agreed to approve and allow polygamy, and legitimate bastards. 
This is absurd. 

If the omission to make this objection had continued for 
sixty years, and had occurred ninety times instead of nine, 
and thereby nine States with polygamy had been added to the 
original six Slave States, it would no more be a precedent for 
fastening a promise, or an obligation, on the other States to 


remain neutral, than an omission by any one of the States for 
sixty years, and until nine or ninety thousand acts of fraud 
and swindling had been perpetrated within its borders, would 
bind and oblige such State, not only to omit to forbid such 
acts, but also bind and obligate it (for this is the slave logic) to 
tolerate and sanction fraud, and protect and reward swindlers, 
because these crimes, not being forbidden, were tolerated by the 
institutions of the complaining State. For example, there are 
certain acts of deception which were not criminal in any of 
the States at one time. Within a few years past, Massachu- 
setts, New York, and Pennsylvania, and perhaps several other 
of the States, have passed statutes, declaring the fraudulent 
procurement of property by any false pretence to be indicta- 
ble, and imposing upon the offender a heavy fine and impri- 
sonment. Now suppose the citizen of a State having no 
such laws should go to a State having them, could he claim to 
violate the local law of the State forbidding this offence, 
because it was not forbidden in the State he came from ; or 
could the State he came from demand this indulgence for him 
from the other State? It is repeated, that the" people have 
the same title to, and power over, their dock-yards, their many 
vaults, and their ships of war, as they have over their lands ; 
and they have no less over the latter than they have over the 

The sovereign power of the people, through Congress, over 
their territory is entire. 

This construction has been uniformly acted upon by the peo- 
ple, the States, and the General Government, from the ordi- 
nance of 1787, which expressly forbid slavery in the only 
territory then held by the people ; and this prohibition was 
voted for by every member of that Congress, except one mem- 
ber, and he was a northern delegate. 

Upon the occasion of the Missouri Compromise, Mr. Mon- 
roe required each member of his cabinet to give a special writ- 
ten opinion upon the constitutional power of Congress to pro- 
hibit slavery in the territories. The opinion of the cabinet, 
including John C. Calhoun, was unanimous in favor of the 
power; and, upon the strength of it, the Compromise Act was 
passed, and approved by President Monroe; by which the peo- 
ple of Missouri were permitted to hold slaves, and slavery was 
for ever prohibited and excluded from territory sufficient in size 
to form twenty States. 


The same power has also heen exercised hy numerous acts 
of Congress, organizing territorial governments, by the recent 
act organizing the Oregon territory, and by the acknowledged 
inability of Congress to interfere with the question of slavery 
in California, because Mexico had abolished slavery in 1837, 
before that country was ceded by Mexico to the United States, 
subject to this restriction, just as did pass to the United States 
the territories under the ordinance of 1787. 

This power, by Congress, to forbid slavery in its own terri- 
tories is clearly proved, and it has at no time been called in 
question until the winter of 1848-9. 

If this power is exposed to any remark, the question might 
properly be asked, whether in a moral view Congress has any 
authority to allow slavery in the territories, or to make it law- 
ful anywhere. 

Because governments have power to forbid a wrong, it does 
not follow that they can legalize it. All crimes mala in se 
may be forbidden by the law ; this adds nothing to the force of 
the previous prohibition, except, perhaps, to prescribe a pen- 
alty ; but it does not follow that the offence is taken out of 
the statute book of ethics and reason, and that, therefore, it 
could be sanctioned by legislative enactment. 

All our penal codes prohibit murder, arson, and perjury; 
but they could not allow them. 

So, too, with slavery ; if it be a crime malum in se, and the 
Bible says so, then, although Congress may forbid it, it has 
no power to allow it; and that part of the Missouri Compro- 
mise was void. 

Slavery, therefore, cannot lawfully exist in any of the States 
or territories of the United States, except the States in which 
it existed when the confederation was made, and in States since 
then admitted into the Union, which were made out of terri- 
tory in which it existed at the time of its acquisition, and by 
the annexation of slave States, as it was with Texas. 

That is to say, that the Constitution of the United States 
does not empower Congress to create slavery ; that the States 
did not confer upon the central government any authority to 
extend slavery, or to make it lawful in any place where it did 
not exist at the time the jurisdiction of this government at- 
tached to it; that, on the contrary, the States conferred, nego- 
tiated, and confederated upon the subject, as it then stood, so 
as to secure to the slaveholder the advantages he then had, of 


the local right of property to his slave, and of the right for 
his pursuit and recapture, together with the incidental political 
privilege of representation; and with a distinct prohibition 
against the importation of slaves after twenty-one years, and 
no more. 

In all this, the Free States have acted with good faith. They 
consented to the admission of all the States formed from terri- 
tory acquired from France and Spain with slavery ; and also 
to the annexation of Texas with slavery, which last-mentioned 
case was not within the purview of the States when they con- 
federated; and they have gone further, for, however they abhor 
slavery, they agreed to the Missouri Compromise, which, under 
the professions of the Free States, was an indefensible conces- 

It is obvious that these emergencies did not enter into the 
minds of the contracting parties to the Union ; because nothing 
was said or written about them in the Constitution, the debates, 
reports, or conferences ; nor is there the slightest allusion made 
to them by any one. 

The probability is that these contingencies were not in view, 
or, if so, that it was considered that the ordinance of 1787 
covered the whole ground. 

This is the rational interpretation of what was then done, 
and it has at no time been contradicted until free territory was 
acquired from Mexico, when the slaveholding politicians ad- 
vanced the sophism, that slaves were property out of the Slave 
States, because they are property at home, and that the States 
had no sovereign or political power over their after-acquired 

This contrivance was got up, as is openly avowed, to secure 
the slavers in what they insolently denominate a balance of 
power in the offices and management of the National Grovern- 

There are advanced for it no reasons founded in morality, hu- 
manity, religion, or national good, but it is openly put upon 
the broad ground of force, without law, to carry slavery and 
all its admitted curses into lands and over people created free. 

So far from these doctrines having been heretofore enter- 
tained, it will be found, on reference to the records of the early 
days of the republic, and to the opinion and judgment of the 
slaveholders of those times, that the strongest repugnance to 
slavery, and the most earnest aspirations for its total abolition, 


were devoutly entertained by the slaveholders and slavedealers 

On the 20th of October, 1774, six weeks after the Congress 
of the colonies met at Carpenters' Hall, in Philadelphia, it 
adopted a stringent resolution against slavery. 

On the 6th of July, 1775, in its "declaration on the right 
of taking up arms," Congress proclaimed that GOD never in- 
tended that a part of the human race should have absolute 
property in, and unbounded dominion over others. 

The first draft of the Declaration of Independence by Jef- 
ferson contained a distinct repudiation of slavery, which was 
expunged to conciliate the delegates from South Carolina and 

In the summer of 1774, several county conventions, at some 
of which Washington presided, were held in Virginia, which 
denounced slavery and the slave trade. 

On the 1st day of August, 1774, a convention of all the 
counties in Virginia was held at Williamsburg, of which Jef- 
ferson was a delegate, but from illness was unable to attend, 
but sent a resolution, which was adopted, condemning slavery 
and the slave trade. 

On the 27th of August, in the same year, a similar convention 
was held at Newbern, in North Carolina, which adopted a similar 
resolution. In a letter to Lafayette, of May 10, 1786, Washing- 
ton said, " The abolition of slavery certainly might and assuredly 
ought to be effected, and that too by legislative authority." In a 
letter to Robert Morris, of April 12, 1786, he said, " There is 
not a man living who wishes, more sincerely than I do, to see 
a plan adopted for the abolition of slavery; but there is only 
one proper and effectual mode in which it can be accomplished, 
and that is by legislative authority." In a letter to John Fen- 
ton Mercer, of Sept. 9, 1786, he said, "It is among my wishes 
to see some plan adopted by which slavery in this country may 
be abolished by law." In a letter to Sir John Sinclair, he 
said, " There are, in Pennsylvania, laws for the gradual aboli- 
tion of slavery, which neither Maryland nor Virginia have at 
present, but which nothing is more certain than that they must 
have, and at a period not remote." 

To whose patriotism and wisdom is the country most in- 
debted for the adoption of our glorious Constitution ? Wash- 
ington and Madison, slaveholders. Yet these same slave- 
holders most zealously opposed slavery, and recommended laws 


for its abolition. And so did Wythe, Lee, Pendleton, Mason, 
Patrick Henry, Johnson, Tucker, Tyler, Grayson, Blair, Page, 
Parker, Innis, Dawson, Randolph, of Virginia; the great Luther 
Martin, of Maryland ; Iredell, Galloway, and others of North 

And Congress has acted upon the platform established by 
the ordinance of 1787. 

It is to be found in the fourth volume of the House Jour- 
nals, page 381, second session of seventh Congress, under date 
of March 2, 1803 ; it is a case in point. The Territory of 
Indiana then being under the provisions of the Ordinance of 
Freedom of 1787, the people of Indiana, through a public 
meeting, of which William Henry Harrison was President, 
petitioned that this article of the Ordinance of '87, prohibiting 
slavery in the territory, might be suspended for a given num- 
ber of years. The petition was referred to a committee, of 
which the celebrated John Randolph, of Virginia, was chair- 
man. His report shows what sentiments obtained in Virginia 
on this subject in 1803 : — 

" Mr. Randolph, from the committee to which were referred 
a letter from William Henry Harrison, President of the Con- 
vention held at Vincennes, declaring the consent of the people 
of Indiana to the suspension of the sixth article of compact 
between the United States and the people of that territory, also 
a memorial and petition of the inhabitants of the said territory, 
made the following report : — 

" That the rapid population of the State of Ohio sufficiently 
evinces, in the opinion of your committee, that the labor of 
slaves is not necessary to promote the growth and settlement 
of colonies in that region ; that this labor, demonstrably the 
dearest of any, can only be employed to advantage in the cul- 
tivation of products more valuable than any known to that 
quarter of the United States; that the committee deem it 
highly dangerous and inexpedient to impair a provision wisely 
calculated to promote the happiness and prosperity of the 
Northwestern country, and to give strength and security to 
that extensive frontier. In the salutary operation of this saga- 
cious and benevolent restraint, it is believed that the inhabit- 
ants of Indiana will, at no very distant day, find ample remu- 
neration for a temporary privation of labor and of emigration. 

" From such a consideration as they have been enabled to 
bestow on the subject at this late period of the session, and 



under the pressure of accumulating business, they recommend 
the following resolution, which is respectfully submitted to the 
judgment of the House. 

" Resolved, That it is inexpedient to suspend, for a limited 
time, the operation of the sixth article of compact between the 
original States and the people and States west of the Ohio." 

So too the two great political parties of the country have uni- 
formly recognized this view of the subject as being established. 

The Democratic National Convention at Baltimore, that nomi- 
nated Mr. Polk for President, and the Whig Convention at 
Philadelphia, that nominated General Taylor for the same office, 
both adopted this principle. 

The same language was used by a Democratic convention of 
Pennsylvania, held at Pittsburgh on the 4th of July, 1849. 

And all these national concessions were openly repeated by 
Mr. Benton and Mr. Cass on one side, and Mr. Webster and 
Mr. Clay on the other side, in the Senate of the United States, 
in 1850. 

The entire orthodoxy of this creed was fully acquiesced in, 
and ratified by the two great political parties, of which these 
distinguished statesmen are the acknowledged leaders; and no 
one objected to it in either house of Congress, except the fanatics 
and factionists. 

The following is the resolution referred to above : — 

" Resolved, That the Democratic party adheres now, as it 
ever has done, to the Constitution of the country. Its letter 
and spirit they will neither weaken nor destroy; and they re- 
declare that slavery is a domestic local institution of the South, 
subject to State law alone, and with which the General Govern- 
ment has nothing to do. Wherever the State law extends its 
jurisdiction, the local institutions can continue to exist." 

To which this convention adds : — 

" Esteeming it a violation of State rights to carry it beyond 
State limits, we deny the power of any citizen to extend the area 
of bondage beyond its present dominion ; nor do we consider it 
a part of the compromise of the Constitution that slavery should 
forever travel with the advancing column of our territorial pro- 



If slaves are property by the local laws of the Slave States, 
they are not so by the Constitution; the word slave or slavery 
is not to be found in that charter; nor are they citizens of the 
States where they are held. 

By the Constitution they are called persons, whenever re- 
ferred to. 

The slaveholders knew the essential importance of the word 
"slave," that it might mean property, and they struggled to the 
utmost for its adoption into the Constitution ; but its use was 
peremptorily rejected and refused, for the avowed and express 
purpose of avoiding any national or confederate acknowledgment 
of the right of property in a human being, and leaving the Slave 
States to depend entirely upon their local laws for the sole and 
only sanction to slavery. 

Nor is the subject anywhere acted upon in the Constitution; 
it is only referred to there. 

In the second paragraph of section second, article first, which 
directs the appointment of representatives, the words as to this, 
and in this connection, are, viz. : — 

"Representatives shall be apportioned amongst the several 
States according to their respective numbers, which shall be 
determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, ap- 
prentices, and three-fifths of (iiot slaves, but) all other persons." 

And it is also referred to in the third clause of the second 
section of the fourth article, in these words : — 

"No person {instead of no slave) held to service or labor in 
any State under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, 
in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged 
from such service or labor (not slavery}, but (not such slave shall 
be delivered up, but) such person shall be delivered up, on claim 
of the party to whom such service or labor (not such slave) may 
be due." 

Nor are slaves property by the second section of article four 
of the Constitution, which is: — 

" The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all privileges 
and immunities of citizens in the several States." 

Which would allow a citizen of a Slave State, who came to 
reside in a Free State, to have all the privileges of such Free 
State ; but not the privileges he had in the Slave State, if they 


were not allowed in the Free State; or he could bring with him 
the privilege to hold and work slaves on farms and in factories, 
and keep a seraglio, and have his concubines, and their spurious 
issue, treated as lawful; or he might cheat and swindle, if these 
things were allowed in the Slave States, in defiance of the laws 
of a State forbidding these things, and also in defiance of the 
express reservations in the tenth article of the amendments to 
the Constitution to each State, namely — 

" That the powers not delegated to the United States by the 
Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to 
the States respectively or to the people." 

Which obviously means that the States, or the people, may 
do anything they choose to do, that they have not consented 
and agreed that the United States government may do for 
them ; or which they have covenanted and agreed shall not be 
done by any one ; and, as they did not agree that the United 
States government might make laws to allow slavery, and did 
not agree that this should not be done, it is conclusive that 
each State has a right, so far as the Constitution is concerned, 
to allow or forbid it; and that " the people of all the States," as 
a nation or a state, have the same right to forbid and expunge 
from their whole dominions, slavery, as much as they have a 
right to forbid bigamy and swindling. 

These direct conclusions are not to be overcome by the as- 
sertion that the words "privileges and immunities" imply and 
mean slaves in the sense in which these words are here used; 
for the definition of the word slave, perhaps, is property ; and it 
has been shown that its use, therefore, was for this reason de- 
nied by the Constitution, without a blink. 

These words "privileges and immunities" are used in the 
Constitution in a political sense, referring to the rights of pro- 
tection, suffrage, office, inheritance, &c, and not in a commer- 
cial or business sense. 

One State might allow, without license, peddlers, lawyers, 
doctors, lotteries, taverns, and theatres ; in all which, their citi- 
zens would have a lawful property ; and another State might 
restrict them. 

A Free State might allow the printing and publication of 
books and pictures against slavery, in which the owner, while 
he remained in a Free State, would most clearly have property, 
as much as he would have in his coat or his watch; for which 
he could maintain all civil actions; and the fraudulent taking 


of which might be larceny ; and if he carried them to a Slave 
State, they might there be obnoxious to the local laws, and 
seized and burned by the common hangman, and the owner im- 
prisoned, whipped, and branded. 

This has been done very often ; and no citizen of a Free 
State ever pretended to sympathize with the sufferer, because 
he had thereby been abridged of his "privileges and immuni- 
ties" as a citizen of another State. 

Moreover, these words, "privileges and immunities/' do not 
mean property. 

It is utterly denied that they have ever had such a definition 
by any lexicographer. 

The interpretation of u privilege" is, a special favor given to 
a man to do something more than others may do; and an "im- 
munity" is to excuse him from doing something which all men 
must do. 

The whole theory of the opposite side, it is avowed, entirely 
rests upon inferences, constructions, and implications ; they do 
not pretend that there is anything in direct terms in the Con- 
stitution to support their views ; or that Congress, representing 
the entire body of the people, has ever, by indirection, acqui- 
escence, or tacit laches, or in any way acknowledged, or recog- 
nized, slaves to be property. 

On the contrary, this very point was distinctly brought up, 
immediately after the opening of the first Congress, which met 
on the 4th of March, 1789, after the adoption of the Constitu- 
tion. (Conrad's Biography, 172.) 

Mr. Parker, a member from Virginia, who professed to de- 
plore the evils of slavery, made an effort to discontinue the 
importation of slaves, by moving the insertion of a clause in the 
impost bill, then under consideration, imposing a duty of ten 
dollars on each imported slave. 

Congress had no power to prohibit the importation of slaves, 
until after the expiration of twenty-one years ; but the first 
clause of the ninth section of the first article, it is seen, author- 
ized the imposition of a duty on them, not exceeding ten dol- 

And thus, by imposing this duty of ten dollars, it was sought 
to discourage this traffic, which Congress had not power to in- 
terdict and abolish until after 1808. 

The ostensible object was humanity; perhaps the mover was 
sincere ; and, perhaps, this ten dollar duty clause found its way 


into the Constitution to accommodate this experiment; at any 
rate, the motion was constitutional. 

But this Southern trick, if it was a trick, could not escape 
the sagacity of Mr. Sherman, and many members of Congress, 
who had just come from the convention that framed the Consti- 

They very well knew the understanding with which the 
guarded expressions referred to had been used. 

They objected to Mr. Parker's motion, upon the ground that 
slaves were not propert}'. 

That the Constitution had wholly and absolutely rejected and 
denied this proposition, and that Mr. Parker's motion, by im- 
posing a duty on slaves, as if property, involved a covert recon- 
ciliation of this broad and irrefragable principle, that they were 
not property. 

An argument so consistent, astute, and unanswerable ob- 
tained a signal triumph ; and the motion was instantly voted 
down by forty-three to eleven votes. 

This early, rigid, and prompt rebuke of an attempt, whether 
by design or not, to draw the nation into an implied acknow- 
ledgment that slaves are property, has been, ever since then, 
most carefully avoided by the advocates of slavery. 

In all their eloquent and mournful appeals to the North, they 
have nowhere stopped at or made this a starting-point ; and if 
there had afterwards been in Congress the same sturdy reso- 
lution and honest patriotism which distinguished and adorned 
the names and services of Roger Sherman and his compatriots ' 
of the Revolution, and of the doubtful struggles for the Union, 
the slavedrivers would not have put this corroding blot upon 
nine more States, and held the power to taunt a few of the ser- 
vile and truckling representatives of the Free States, who voted 
against, or skulked from voting for, the good old North West- 
ern Territory restriction, with the ignominious insult of being 
" dough, faces." 

Besides, in 1789, only two years after the adoption of the 
Constitution, and after this distinct and overwhelming majority 
was demonstrated against the motion made by Mr. Parker, to 
wit, on the 25th of September, 1789, and December 15th, 
1791, and January 8th, 1798, and December 12th, 1803, on 
which occasions Congress made additions to the Constitution ; 
all of which were announced by the Secretary of State, on the 
25th day of September, 1801, to be ratified; and long after, 


when there had been a blunt, constitutional, and congressional 
denial, that slaves were property, and that no words had been 
used in the Constitution or by Congress, with that intention. 
And the fact, and the inference that they were to be legally 
or constitutionally regarded as property, had both been openly 
and designedly rejected. After all this special pleading, met 
by a broad, technical demurrer, and direct judgment, solemnly 
entered against them without a respondeat ouster, or leave to 
renew their pleadings — why, it is asked, did not the slaveholders 
then propose the adoption of such express words as would test and 
settle this matter, if any doubts remained upon this absurd 
question of pretended construction and interpretation ? 

And since then, now some sixty years, why have they not 
come up straightforward to the mark, and claimed to have 
these alleged inferences and interpretations put down affirma- 
tively and in form, by way of addition to the national charter ? 

This has not been attempted ; and, if the experiment were 
tried, the result would show a defeat by votes, as signal as 
their theory is legally and logically false. 

These are all the constitutional authorities relied on, or in- 
voked, by the slaveholders. 

Slaves cannot, therefore, be held and regarded as property and 
chattels by the laws of the United States, and, as such, taken 
into a territory belonging to the people of the United States, 
without their consent, any more than they can be thus taken 
into a Free State, and any more than the government of the 
United States can force an individual State to do a thing not 
provided for by the express terms of the federal compact. 


The abstract and practical law upon the subject of slavery 
in the United States, it is believed, has been fully stated. 

But a party has sprung up, who call in question that part 
of this argument which so plainly establishes the political 
power, as well as the right of property, of the people of the 
United States over their territories. 

They began by contending that the right to hold slaves be- 
longs exclusively to the people of each State, and that the 
people of all the States have nothing to do with it; that ; 


although the whole people may have title to the land, from 
which a new State is formed, their political power does not 
extend over it, so as to authorize them, in the organization of 
a territorial government, to forbid slavery ; but that this ques- 
tion is political and personal, and should be left to the choice 
of the people of the territories, as it was left to the people of 
the original States, by the Constitution. 

There is much apparent plausibility in this argument; but 
there is not enough to counterbalance the weight of the prece- 
dents established by the people, as is before stated. 

Besides, it does not follow that, because the original States 
thought proper to unite, without rejecting slavery, the people 
of these States, in their aggregate capacity, are bound to admit 
new States into the Union upon the same footing; they might, 
perhaps, refuse to receive them altogether. 

The language of the Constitution is not imperative. The 
third section of the 4th article provides that " new States may 
he admitted into the Union;" the word is may, not shall. 

Suppose Cuba, Mexico, or any of the South American 
States, or the Canadas, were to ask for admission, we should 
not be required to admit them at all, unless we chose ; much 
less upon the original terms of the confederation, if experience 
had established the manifest impolicy or impropriety of doing 
so : or, if we had discovered that our family was sufficiently 
large, and that its members could not be conveniently in- 
creased, we might reject the proposal ; it is wholly a matter of 
option with ourselves. 

For example, would it not be equitable and just to demand 
from these foreign applicants contributions in money or land 
equivalent to their proportion of the exposure, expense, and 
wars, by which our institutions have been achieved, and the 
cost of our great national improvements, munitions, and do- 
main ? or does it follow that, because the original States left 
open the question of marriage, and therefore permitted any 
member of that compact to legalize concubinage, we should 
not have a clear, moral right to say, even if any of the old 
States had tolerated this pollution, which they now all have the 
right to do, that, although this infamy must be borne with by 
the old States, and that the emergencies of the Union demand- 
ed this concession then, its allowance should not now be con- 
ceded to a new State ? 

If the applicants contended that there is as much reason in 


allowing tlicm, as an old State, to perpetrate this, or any other 
wrong, the obvious answer would be, the first compact was a 
matter of compromise, if not of impelling necessity ; whereas, 
the admission of a new State, with power to practice wrong, is 
not necessary ; was not stipulated for by the Constitution, and 
that it never was so understood ; and, on the contrary, as to 
slavery, that the people struggled to provide for its abolition 
by the Constitution; that it was expected that the States would 
abolish it, one by one, until it should be finally extinguished, 
as is manifest by the express provision in the Constitution, by 
which a limit was fixed to the importation of slaves. 

Again : the Constitution leaves open to the old States the 
entire local power upon the subject of education ; it tolerates 
all religions, and forbids religious tests ; but it does not require 
or demand the observance of religion, or of the Sabbath day. 

Now suppose any of these old States should prohibit educa- 
tion, as some of them have done to their slaves, forbid the 
observance of the Sabbath day, and of all religious worship, as 
they have the power to do, so far as respects the Constitution ; 
is it possible that a majority of the people of the States might 
not, in self-defence, refuse to consort with States practicing or 
proposing to practice such profanities, or that they would not 
have a right to make it a condition precedent to their political 
fraternity, that they should not license such paganisms ? 

No one, not even slaveholders, would call in question the 
justice and propriety of this precaution, upon the ground of 
self-preservation alone, independent of the high moral imposi- 
tions of public duty, and the guardianship of general morals. 

Well, then, suppose a majority of the people, having no sinis- 
ter motives, but acting upon a solemn sense of duty, and as 
evidence of their sincerity, abolish and give up the pecuniary 
advantages of slavery, deliberately resolve and avow it to be 
their conscientious belief that slavery is forbidden by the laws 
of nature and of God ; must it not then be regarded as much a 
subject of popular and legitimate objection as those already men- 
tioned ? and is it competent for the minority to deny or prevent 
the application or employment of this rule of action for set- 
tling the dispute, any more than in any other case which must 
be determined by the public voice? And can it be allowed 
that a minority shall thus trample into the ground all the laws 
by which freemen are governed, without one argument or 


reason in support of their usurpation, except that which is 
founded in cupidity and power? 

When some of the more honest and enlightened of this party, 
and some of the liberally disposed from the North, most gene- 
rously proposed to waive these settled rules of law, to let them 
have their own way, and that this question of slavery should be 
left open for the action of the people of the territories, they 
readily agreed to it; but when the people inhabiting California, 
a part of the public domain, offered themselves witli a constitu- 
tion for admission into the Union, with a restriction against 
slavery, in which application they were backed by President 
Taylor, they were told, in the House of Representatives, Janu- 
ary 30th, 1850, by Mr. Brown of Mississippi, that "/In// have 
no right to make a State Constitution, lira use they are not citi- 
zens of the United States ; and that they arc trespassers and in- 
terlopers;" that they must wait, and go through a process of 
Congressional territorialization, in which they will agitate and 
convulse the country by the convocation of a convention to dis- 
solve the Union. 

There is just about as much reason and justice for this cause 
in refusing to recognize the confederate aspirations of California, 
or any other new State, as there would be in putting out of the 
Union every State that has abolished slavery ; or as there would 
be to hold that a true interpretation of the national compact 
forbids any of the States to abolish slavery. 

Perhaps the names, nativity, occupations, and citizenship of 
the hundreds of thousands of men of the best blood and stock 
from the old States who have emigrated to the shores of the 
Pacific, and who are known to be the projectors and founders 
of this new State, are as extensively and favorably known to 
their countrymen and to the world as are the names and heri- 
tage of some of their impudent defamers. 

Their self-denial, patient toil, manly independence, perilous 
enterprise, and proud proclamation for freedom and equal rights 
in that distant land, will triumphantly compare with the selfish 
apathy of being subsisted by slaves, the inhumanity of vindicat- 
ing its further toleration, the absurdity of contradicting its in- 
famy, the injustice of attempting to force it upon others, and 
the hollow patriotism which scoffs at liberty and evendianded 
right, and profanely threatens the national fraternity, for no 
reason but that the industrious sons of freedom proudly choose 
to till the ground with their own hands, refuse to work and 


consort with negroes, and scorn to live in laziness and sloth off 
of slave labor. 

It has been shown that there is no constitutional recognition 
of property in slaves, or natural implication thereof, by the use 
of the words" privi/ci/es and immunities;" and that Congress, 
representing the people, has a right to forbid slavery in the ter- 
ritories belonging to the people; this should not be denied. 
This whole question was settled by the ordinance of 1787 ; and 
when the Missouri question was up, this was not denied by the 
honest statesmen of the country. 

The concession then made was liberal and specific; and then 
it was supposed this matter was ended; and there it should have 
been dropped, and not one word should have again been said 
by. either side upon the subject. The Wilmot Proviso levels it3 
force at an obsolete idea; every man of intelligence saw and so 
treated it — and felt that, like anti-masonry, free soil, and amal- 
gamation, it was a short-sighted and unnecessary demand, in- 
tended for political effect, and to irritate and chafe the feelings 
of the Slave States. It was ungenerous to introduce it; and it 
was pressed with provoking and wanton indecorum. 

It is now treated as a new matter ; whereas, it is nothing but 
the old ordinance; the elements and the purposes of which were 
far better understood then than the political gladiators in these 
times, it would seem, are willing to appreciate any public mea- 


There is a wide difference between the power of the whole 
people over their territories, and that which they have over the 
District of Columbia. 

That District was ceded by Virginia and Maryland for govern- 
ment buildings, and their necessary and appurtenant accommo- 
dations ; this was the understanding ; it was not expected that 
any authority should be held over it, except that which is inci- 
dent to these objects. Virginia has taken back her part. 

Slavery was a local right before this grant, and it went with 
it without objection, as did the other local laws of the District, 
which have been continued under this cession, upon the same 
ground that slavery has been held not to have gone with New 
Mexico to the United States, and that it remained with the 
several States under the confederation. 


It is a part of the common law of the District, which belongs 
to the people of that District, and which Congress never had 
any power granted to them to change or alter. 

Moreover, it is said that a provision to meet this contingency 
was moved in the Legislatures of Maryland and Virginia, both, 
at the time these bodies passed the resolutions of cession to the 
United States for the District of Columbia, and that the motions 
were withdrawn, upon the general exclamation that it was wholly 
supererogant and unnecessary. 

This subject was therefore well understood at that time, and 
if the United States were not disposed to accept the grant with 
this concession, they should have objected then. 

It is too late now Congress has no more power to interfere 
with this local privilege than it has to go over the line into 
either State, and attempt the same usurpation of it there. 

And it is as gross an act of indecency in Congress to 
agitate or meddle with it in the District as it would be to inter- 
fere with slavery in Maryland ; and this was not thought of until 

The pretext that the representatives from the Free States 
are shocked by the chains and handcuffs of the slavedrivers is 
mawkish and absurd. It is a shallow subterfuge for political 
effect; most of the slavedealers and slavedrivers are renegades 
from the Free States; the respectable inhabitants of the South 
are above this degrading employment; and if the delicacy of 
the Northern members is so refined as to be disturbed by these 
exposures, why did they accept the cession, and establish the 
seat of government there ? They knew all this then as well 
as now; and if it is too revolting to be endured, why not re- 
move the Capitol to a more genial location? They have the 
votes and the power, and in this they can lawfully act; but, in 
the project of abolishing slavery in that District, they have no 
lawful power; and this repeated and persevering agitation of 
this subject is unmanly and indecent. 

The South are in this way provoked, taunted, jeered at, and 
perpetually insulted ; and they have just as much right to re- 
sent these wanton affronts as the Yankees had to snub George 
the Third, and his impudent tariff, by mobbing into the sea°a 
ship-load of foreign produce. 

Suppose the seat of government were removed to Philadel- 
phia. With what grace could the Southern members recrimi- 
nate these oppugnations upon our infamous and ruinous corpo- 


ration monopolies ; our stock-jobbing trickery; our note-shaving, 
usury, and extortion; the pernicious influences of factory em- 
ployment upon the morals and minds of females, so resolutely 
and stoutly contended for by us some few years ago, when we 
were infatuated with the manly and romantic pursuits of agri- 
culture and commerce — so eloquent in exposing the squalid 
and degraded condition of these subjects of sordid oppression in 
England; our purse-proud and grasping manufacturing adven- 
turers, who hypocritically impose upon the sympathies and 
patriotism of the people, and thereby obtain unjust duties, pro- 
hibitions, and encouragement, and then grind the poor by in- 
cessant toil, and mean and scanty wages — and when they revolt 
from oppression and hunger, indict and infamously punish and 
degrade them by penitentiary incarceration ! How we preach 
and prate of law, order, and liberty, amidst unrestrained mobs, 
atrocious murders, demoniac riots, insurrection, conflagration, 
and civil war ! 

Suppose they should impertinently propose that Congress 
should pass laws to bring these repulsive objects to a corre- 
sponding level with the alleged proprieties of the South in these 
respects, and encourage their constituents to flood Congress 
with petitions from fanatics, and insolent resolutions of political 
theorists, of the legislatures of the States, insulting, annoying, 
and irritating the members from the Free States upon subjects 
known to be wholly and exclusively out of the sphere of na- 
tional legislation; would not this be as consistent and proper as 
the conduct now practiced on them ? — and how would the North 
stand to be such a butt ? 

These things are all wrong, unbecoming, disgraceful, and 
wholly inexcusable; and are felt and acknowledged by all 
honest, intelligent, and respectable portions of the community 
as wholly indefensible, and a grievous reproach to the integrity 
of the national compact. 


The States agreed, by the 2d section of the 4th article of 
the Constitution, that fugitive slaves, escaping from any State 
into another State, "shall be delivered up" to the owner. This 
is not denied, nor is it to be denied that this duty is incumbent 
on the authorities of the State. 

While this contract is in force, they have no right to with- 


hold their ready and cordial acquiescence to it, any more than 
they have a right to refuse to surrender criminal fugitives from 
justice. The constitutional provision is the same for both, and 
no one has ever thought of sheltering a criminal from another 
State, or of circumventing his arrest, or molesting his pursuers. 

It is no answer, that riot and disorder come from the recap- 
ture of fugitive slaves, or that it is disagreeable to magistrates 
to order them back to their masters; the States have under- 
taken to do it, and they and their judges should do so, with a 
readiness that becomes the character of proud and energetic 
freemen, which they profess to be, and with a stringent police, 
that would preserve the peace, and insure the redemption of this 
voluntary covenant, made upon a good and bond jidc considera- 
tion, with a full knowledge of all their rights. 

If they are tired of it, let them compromise for, or buy it 
out; but, while the bond is in full force, they should keep it in 
good faith, like true men, and not, like gamesters and knaves, 
attempt to shrink from, cavil about, and repudiate it. 

If a majority of the people of the Free States, having given 
the experiment a fair trial, are irreconcilably averse to future 
consort with the Slave States, let them propose a separation, 
instead of bullying the Slave States out of the Union. They 
came together in peace, and let them so part, if they cannot 
agree. It was a trial, a compromise made against doubtful and 
adverse interests, without any certainty of success, but with 
obvious urgencies for the compact, and a most solemn pledge 
for true fellowship, mutual forbearance, and good faith. It was 
negotiated for in a spirit of concession, harmony, and courtesy, 
by men of business, education, intelligence, experience, and 
honor. They appreciated and ratified its utility, lived out their 
lives under its conservative protection, and died with devout 
aspirations to Heaven for its prosperity. Almost three genera- 
tions have participated in its fruitions ; and the hope was in- 
dulged that the duration of a legacy, which cost so much, would 
end only with time. The scene has not changed; slavery is no 
worse now than it then was. But, in these modern days, a 
new and refined philanthropy has dawned upon the minds of 
men. The mental conflicts, moral expediencies, political ne- 
cessities, and sincere patriotism of our fathers are wholly forgot- 
ten. It is demanded that the compact, made by the wisdom 
of those who travailed with anguish that cannot be again en- 
dured, shall be repudiated; that the whole agony shall be gone 


over ; that domestic slavery, which was then compromised for 
Northern tonnage, the abrogation of slave importation, with a 
mutual agreement to leave the rest to the conscience of man 
for its final abolition, with a solemn covenant there to let it for- 
ever rest, shall be re-debated in tei - ms of vulgar abuse and 
profane scurrility, as if the subject had not been thoroughly 
understood, and forever settled, more than seventy years ago; 
or as if the South had fraudulently concealed it, and now it was 
first discovered; and also as if they were now trying to force 
it upon the States which had abolished it. There can be no 
greater inconsistency or injustice than this; and its toleration is 
a burning shame and an infamous reproach to the intelligence 
and integrity of the nation. 

Under this last-recited provision of the Constitution, Con- 
gress enacted, February 12th, 1793, chap. 51, sec. 7, that the 
owner of fugitive slaves shall be empowered to seize or arrest 
and take them before any judge of the United States, in the 
State in which they are found, or before any magistrate of the 
State ; whose duty it shall be, on due proof thereof, to certify 
the same to the owner; which certificate shall be a sufficient 
warrant for removing them back to the State from whence they 

The fourth section imposes a penalty of $500 upon any one 
who shall harbor, conceal, or rescue such fugitive slaves. 

This law was obviously imperfect in two respects : it re- 
quired that the claimant should formally institute his demand 
before a judge of the United States, who might not be in the 
State ; or before a magistrate of the State, who might refuse 
to act ; and it gave a penalty of $500 against the abettors of 
the fugitives, which might be no adequate equivalent for the 
value of the slave, and cannot be lawfully substituted for an 
abstract right, imperatively and expressly made by the Consti- 
tution, in the way of which there should not be thrown any 
obstacle, and a slur or dodge of which is an unqualified wrong. 

The Supreme Court of the United States, in Priggv. The Com- 
monwealth of Pennsylvania, 16 Peters' lleports, 539, ruled 
that the State magistrates were not bound to obey this act of 
Congress, and that Congress has the exclusive power to pass 
laws for carrying out this provision of the Constitution. It 
also ruled that the owner of a slave, under this clause in the 
Constitution, is clothed with the same authority in every State 
of the Union, to seize and recapture his slave in any State to 


Which he has escaped or fled, that he has in the State from 
which he has escaped, without the intervention or co-operation 
of any State or national aid ; and that this clause in the Con- 
stitution may properly be said to execute itself, and to require 
no aid from legislation, state or national ; and that the 1st 
section of the act of the Legislature of Pennsylvania, of March 
25th, 1826, which declares the removal of a slave from Penn- 
sylvania without judicial aid to be kidnapping, and which 
proposes to punish as a public offence against the State the act 
of seizing and removing a slave by his master, which the Con- 
stitution of the United States was designed to justify and 
uphold, to be unconstitutional and void. 

It will be seen by this how this clause in the Constitution 
has been treated .as a mockery, and how much cause of com- 
plaint the Slave States have on this ground, independent of 
the annoyance to which they are perpetually subjected by 
abolition petitions, resolutions, pamphlets, and inflammatory 
speeches, in and out of Congress. 

This kidnapping law of Pennsylvania was a reproach to the 
State; the indulgence of the spirit in which it was conceived had 
a direct tendency to depress the standard of public integrity, 
and to degrade the morals of the community. 

What can be expected of individuals, when governments 
disregard their contracts ? 

This covenant in the Constitution about fugitive slaves was 
one of the articles of a treaty of amity and union deliberately 
negotiated and solemnly agreed upon between thirteen sove- 
reign and independent States, by which they became mutual 
contracting parties ; and upon its basis the Supreme Court of 
Pennsylvania, as early as 1819, was called to vindicate the 
Slave States against the repeated interventions of the fanatics 
and factions by deciding, to wit: — 

1st. That fugitive slaves must be delivered up to their masters 
upon a summary claim, without the delay or favor of a trial by 

j ul 7- 

2d. That no writ of habeas corpus or homine replegiando 
would lie for a fugitive slave; and 

3d. That in this respect they were placed by the Constitution 
upon a footing with fugitives from criminal justice, who are to 
be returned back to the State from which they flee, and there 
(not in a foreign State) prosecute their right to be discharged 
according to law. 

(Commonwealth v. Deacon, Keeper, &c. ; 5 Sergeant & 


Rawle's Repts., page 62; and 7 Smith's Laws of Pennsylvania, 
287, note.) 

This was the Constitution and its judicial construction from 
1787 down to 1826, when the Legislature of Pennsylvania flew 
into the face of the federal compact, and enacted the law which, 
it is seen, the Supreme Court of the United States, in Prigg's 
case, ruled to be unconstitutional and void ; after then, on the 
3d of March, 1847, the Legislature of Pennsylvania repealed 
this "void" law, and enacted another equally covert and ill 
tempered. They forbade all their judges and magistrates to take 
jurisdiction of any fugitive slave, under penalty of impeachment 
and a fine of $1000, and imposed a fine of $1000 and three 
months' imprisonment upon any person who should violently or 
tumultuously seize any fugitive slave — as if it could be done in 
Pennsylvania without force, and the instant raising of a mob ; 
and shut their prisons against all slaves, unless committed by 
a judge of the United States. 

Of course every runaway slave will not be beckoned over into 
Pennsylvania, at least two hundred miles from a United States 

They also enacted that a writ of habeas corpus might he 
issued for a fugitive slave. 

Thus nullifying the decisions of their own Supreme Court, 
and throwing in the way of the clause of the Constitution every 
possible obstruction. 

In 1850, all sides began to get ashamed of these unblushing 
acts of bad faith ; immense town-meetings were held in Phila- 
delphia, at which the leaders bellowed and vapored about the 
sacred union; a joint resolution of the same character was re- 
ported in the Senate at Harrisburg; aod Governor Johnston 
joined in the farce by a message, couched in terms of censurable 
severity, against the Supreme Court of the United States, for 
their decision in Prigg's case, in which he rudely impugns the 
motives of the court ; and concludes by an elaborate and sophis- 
tical vindication of these Pennsylvania statutes and a caustic 
recrimination upon the Southern States. Governor Johnston 
was most justly rebuked by the act of Congress, soon after those 
passed upon the subject of fugitive slaves. 

Pennsylvania is not alone in these acts of unkindness and 
double-dealing; other States have united in the same course of 
unwarrantable intervention ; and perhaps it would be more con- 
sistent with their lofty pretensions to honesty and patriotism, 


if they were in the first place to repeal all these obnoxious vio- 
lations of the Constitution, and afterwards preach sermons about 
the golden bonds of the Union, and palsying the tongues and 
arras of those who rightfully demand faith or dissolution. 

They have all been most properly humiliated for their teme- 
rity, in being compelled to submit to the passage of a law by 
Congress, by which the strong arm of the Central Government 
is hereafter to be employed in capturing fugitive slaves and re- 
turning them to their lawful owners ; a duty they should have 
cheerfully performed themselves, as they promised to do by the 
Constitution, instead of throwing dogged and unmanly obstacles 
in its way. 

Daniel Webster, in a letter to his friends, at Ncwburyport, 
in 1850, on this subject, remarks : — 

''Now, the counterpart of the 'agitation' presents an equally 
singular and striking aspect in the fact that the greatest clamor 
and outcry have been raised against the cruelty and enormity 
of the reclamation of slaves in quarters where no such reclama- 
tion has ever been made, or, if ever made, the instances are so 
exceedingly few and far between as to have escaped general 
knowledge. New England, it is well known, is the chosen seat 
of the abolition presses and the abolition societies. Here it is, 
principally, that the former cheer the morning by full columns 
of lamentations over the fate of human beings free by nature, 
and by a law above the Constitution. 

" It is well to inquire what foundation there is for all this rhap- 
sody of opinion, and all this violence in conduct. What and 
how many are the instances of the seizure of fugitive slaves 
which these persons have seen, or which have happened in New 
England in their time ? To ascertain the truth in this respect 
I have made diligent inquiry of members of Congress from the 
six New England States. 

"The result, then, of all I can learn is this: No seizure of 
an alleged fugitive slave has ever been made in Maine. No 
seizure of an alleged fugitive slave has ever been made in New 
Hampshire. No seizure of an alleged fugitive slave has ever 
been made in Vermont. No seizure of an alleged fugitive slave 
has ever been made in Rhode Island within the last thirty years. 
No seizure of an alleged fugitive slave is known to have been 
made in Connecticut, except one about twenty-five years ago, 
and in that case the negro was immediately discharged for want 
of proof of identity. Some instances of the seizure of alleged 


fugitive slaves are known to have occurred in this generation in 
Massachusetts; hut, except one, their number and their history 
are uncertain ; that one took place in Boston twelve or fifteen 
years ago; and in that case some charitably disposed persons 
offered the owner a sum of money which he regarded as less 
than half the value of the slave, but which he agreed to accept, 
and the negro was discharged. 

" If this be a true account of all that has happened in New 
England, within the last thirty years, respecting the arrest of 
fugitive slaves, what is there to justify the passionate appeals, 
the vehement and empty declamations, the wild and fantastic 
conduct, of both men and women, which have so long disturbed 
and so much disgraced the country? What is there especially 
that should induce public men to break loose from all just re- 
straint, fall themselves into the merest vagaries, and fan, with 
what they call eloquence, the fires, ever ready to kindle, of popu- 
lar prejudice and popular excitement? I suspect all this to be 
the effect of that wandering and vagrant philanthropy which 
disturbs and annoys all that is present, in time or place, by 
heating the imagination on subjects distant, remote, and uncer- 

" It is admitted, on all hands, that the necessity for any legal 
provision for the reclaiming of fugitive slaves is a misfortune 
and an evil ; as it is admitted by nearly all that slavery itself 
is a misfortune and an evil. And there are States in which the 
evil attending these reclamations is particularly felt. But where 
the evil really exists, there is comparatively little complaint, and 
no excitement. 

" Does not every sober-minded and patriotic man see the ne- 
cessity, and feel the duty, of rebuking that spirit of faction and 
disunion, that spirit of discord, and of crimination and recrimi- 
nation, that spirit that loves angry controversy, and loves it, 
most especially, when evils are imaginary and dangers unreal, 
which has been so actively employed in doing mischief, and 
which, it is to be lamented, has received countenance and en- 
couragement in quarters whence better things were looked for?" 

It is unreasonable now to attempt an arbitrary reformation. 

This evil was compromised for by the Constitution ; and 
whether the North like or dislike it, they have agreed to submit 
to it. 

Under this bargain, it is said that the interests of the South 


have increased in value to the amount of sixteen hundred mil- 
lions of dollars in slaves. 

There is no interest to this extent in stocks, manufactories, 
or commerce, or anything else held by the North, the menace 
of which by the South would not instantly rouse the whole 
North to arms. 


1st. The Wilmot Proviso, and all similar projects, should 
be abandoned. They are inexpedient and unnecessary, and 
will be superseded by events that will do more for the cause of 
freedom than was ever dreamed of by abolitionists and free 

2d. All petitions, motions, and speeches about slavery in 
the District of Columbia, except to stop its exposure in chains 
and at auction, should be stopped; and all attempts to agitate 
these subjects should be silenced by a resolution of Congress. 

3d. In order to establish a uniform rule of action for all the 
States against fugitive slaves, and to supersede the want of the 
will or the power of the individual States to carry out this con- 
stitutional pledge about fugitive slaves, Congress should pass a 
law, containing the most explicit and efficient remedy for the 
capture and return of runaway slaves by the judicial, and, if 
necessary, the military power of the General Government. Both 
are constantly used to enforce the collection of duties upon 
foreign importations for the benefit of all the States; and why 
not use them for the benefit and protection of the acknow- 
ledged and constitutional rights of the individual States? 

The Owners of fugitive slaves cannot carry the power of 
their own States into another State. If they are to submit to 
this wrong, this deliberate breach of the national compact, 
without indemnity, they might as well surrender any other or 
all their rights. The refusal to do them justice in this respect 
is a sufficient moral and legal ground of resistance, as much as 
were the causes that began the revolt of the old colonies. 



Extracts — Poverty — Crime — Banks — Corporations — Monopolies — News- 
papers — Morals — Origin — Draymen — Examples — Prisons — Conspiracies 
— Luxury — Dress — Chances — Tricks — Hypocrisy — Adventurers — Banks 
— Courts — Corruption — Arrogance — Gambling — Stock-jobbing — Cases 
— Dram-shops — Slave-pen — Pillory — Whipping-post — Labor — Hus- 
bandry — Cities dangerous — To be watched — Farms — Rural life — Peace 
— Liberty. 

" The race always deteriorates in cities — distinguished 
families disappear in a few generations; and but for continual 
supplies of the elements of the physical, intellectual, and moral 
character from the country, would soon sink to the lowest effe- 
minacy, and the easy conquest of any savage horde." — Tracts 
for the People. 

" There are now (July, 1849) in Paris 95,179 persons in 
absolute misery from poverty, and 299,387 receiving relief 
from the government, making nearly 400,000 persons in Paris 
in a destitute condition." 


" Great capital cities, when rebellion is upon pretence of griev- 
ances, must needs be of the rebel party, because the griev- 
ances are but taxes, to which citizens, that is, merchants, whose 
profession is their private gain, are naturally mortal enemies ; 
their only glory being to grow excessively rich by buying and 

" B. But they are said to be of all callings the most bene- 
ficial to the commonwealth, by setting the poorer sort of people 
to work. 

" A. That is to say, by making poor people sell their labor 

to them at their own prices. So that poor people, for the 

most part, might get a better living by working in Bridewell, 

than by spinning, weaving, and other such labor as they can 


338 cities. 

do ; saving that by working slightly they may help themselves 
a little, to the disgrace of our manufacture. And as most com- 
monly they are the first encouragers of rebellion, presuming of 
their strength, so also are they, for the most part, the first to 
repent, deceived by them that command their strength." — 
HOBBES, Behemoth. 

Cities are the hotbeds of crime, poverty, physical and moral 
degeneration ; the nurseries of arrogant and brutal aristocra- 
cies, where the combined skill of the worst men is concentrated 
for legalizing plots and schemes for plunder. 

It is a sphere where they can, with impunity, form conspi- 
racies, and give each other employment, countenance, and 

And it is a question of much doubt, whether any of the de- 
monstrations peculiar to cities offered results of substantial 

Their conventions, banks, trade, and newspapers present gi- 
gantic displays of grandeur to the uninitiated beholder; but 
they are all got up by sinister combinations to dazzle and de- 

Their convocations, ostensibly benevolent, are generally 
masks and subterfuges for intrigue and corruption. 

Their banks and corporations gilded screens for cunning 
rogues and reckless knaves. 

Their commerce, a pompous system of vulgar jobbing, by 
sordid and ignorant hucksters. 

And their newspapers have become so profligate that no de- 
pendence can be placed upon their publications. 

Foreign, local, legislative, judicial, and other news is care- 
fully suppressed and maliciously perverted, if sinister motives 
unite ; while ignorance, cowardice, treachery, and brutal vio- 
lence teem like a smoking pestilence from their degraded 

There are a few refreshing exceptions to this just condemna- 
tion of the city newspapers; and those not included, with very 
many country papers, and other respectable periodicals, pour 
out upon the people floods of living waters from the pure fount- 
ains of knowledge and intellect. 

In every city there is one or more scurrilous and obscene 
vehicles, in which the names, families, and pursuits of respect- 
able persons are paragraphed with the most insolent and auda- 
cious familiarity. 

Hundreds of ignorant and base-born miscreants, under pre- 

cities. 339 

tence of obtaining useful information, prowl about, spy and 
pimp for, and catch up trifling incidents, from which to make 
and publish the most detestable and brutal calumnies. 

The toleration given to the press by the law is infamously 
and boldly prostituted to the vilest purposes of abuse and libel ; 
these scandalous and polluted sheets seldom outlive the brief 
impulses for existence of their debauched and beggarly authors. 

In 1788, Dr. Rush wrote a letter to Mr. Brown, the editor 
of the Federal Union, giving him directions how to conduct a 
newspaper in such a manner as to make it innocent, useful, 
and entertaining, viz. : — 

" Never suffer your paper to be a vehicle of private scandal 
or of personal disputes. If the faults of public officers are 
exposed, let it be done with decency. No man has a right to 
attack the vices or follies of private citizens in a newspaper. 
Should you, under a false idea of preserving the liberty of the 
press, lay open the secrets of families, and thereby wound 
female honor and delicacy, I hope our legislature will repeal 
the law that relates to assault and battery, and that the liberty 
of the bludgeon will be as sacred and universal in Pennsylva- 
nia as your liberty of the press. 

" Never publish an article in your paper that you would not 
wish your wife or daughter (if you have any) should read or 

" The less you publish about yourself the better. What 
have your readers to do with the neglects or insults that are 
offered to you by your fellow-citizens ? If a printer offends 
you, attack him in your paper, because he can defend himself 
with the same weapons with which you wound him. Type 
against type is fair play I" Dr. Rush enlarges upon this, and 
then says : " If you had been in twenty Bunker's Hill battles, 
instead of one, and had fought forty duels into the bargain, 
and were afterwards to revenge an affront upon a man who 
was not a printer, in a newspaper, I would not believe that 
you possessed a particle of true courage. 

" Let the advancement of agriculture, manufactures, and 
commerce be the principal objects of your paper. A receipt 
to destroy the insects that feed upon turnips, or to prevent the 
rot in sheep, will be more useful, in America, than all the in- 
ventions for destroying the human species, which so often fill 
the columns of European newspapers." 

340 CITIES. 

Every respectable and intelligent person will ratify the ob- 
vious propriety and justice of these instructions. 

The contrast between what the character of the newspapers 
should be and formerly was, and what it now is, is perhaps 
more striking than any change wrought out by the free institu- 
tions of the United States. 

Political intrigue with all parties places very few upon the 
bench but ignorant, driveling factionists, without means or inde- 
pendence. They hold the newspapers in dread, and when con- 
victions for the most gross libels are had, the courts are afraid 
to punish the culprits. 

Instead of pronouncing inflictions for false and malignant 
libels by heavy fines and imprisonment, such as would vindicate 
the public peace, petty fines of $10 have been imposed upon 
flagrant culprits ; and persons who have had no confidence in 
redress by the court, and have been insufferably outraged, hav- 
ing moderately flagellated the cowardly miscreants, have been 
convicted for riots and battery, insolently preached to by the 
courts about the freedom of the press, the horrors of insurrec- 
tion, the frightful treason of taking the law into their own 
hands, and condemned to oppressive fines, and ignominious and 
long imprisonments. 

These are a few of the fungous fruits of politics, city depra- 
vity, and the glorious freedom of the press. 

" All the finer springs of pleasure dry up and decay in the 
intense joys of crowded cities ; and the warm emanations of 
the heart become cold and torpid." Zimmerman. 

Public opinion, that great lever of moral power, controlling 
all classes in the rural districts, and assigning to every one 
his just position, cannot be brought to bear in large cities upon 
any vice, however obnoxious. 

Cities encourage the most morbid appetite for marvelous and 
ostentatious prodigality. 


" For, what stronger pleasure is there with mankind, or what 
do they earlier learn, or longer retain, than the love of hearing 
and relating things strange and incredible ? How wonderful a 
thing is the love of wondering, and of raising wonder ! 'Tis 
the delight of children to hear tales they shiver at, and the 

CITIES. 841 

vice of old age to abound in strange stories of times past. We 
come into the world wondering at everything ; and when our 
wonder about common things is over, we seek something new 
to wonder at. Our last scene is, to tell wonders of our own to 
all who will believe 'em. And, amidst all this, 'tis well if 
truth comes off but moderately tainted." — Shaftesbury's 
Characteristics, vol. ii. p. 325. 

taylor's diatribe against coaches. 

"If the curses of people that are wronged by them might have 
prevailed, sure I think the most part of them had been at the 
devil many years ago. Butchers cannot pass with their cattle 
for them ; market folks which bring provision of victual to the 
city, are stopt, staid, and hindered. Carts or waines, with their 
necessary ladings, are debarred and letted; the milkmaid's 
ware is often spilt in the dirt, and people's guts like to be 
crushed out, being crowded and shrowded up against stalls and 
stoopes. Whilst Mistress Silverpin with her pander, and a 
pair of crammed pullets, ride grinning and deriding in their 
hell-cart, at their miseries who go on foot : I myself have been 
so served, when I have wished them all in the great Breach, or 
on a light fire upon Hounslow Heath or Salisbury Plain ; and 
their damming of the streets in this manner, where people are 
wedged together that they can hardly stir, is a main and great 
advantage to the most virtuous mysterie of purse-cutting; and, 
for anything I know, the hired or hackney coachman may join 
in the confederacy, and share with the cut-purse, one to stop up 
the way, and the other to shift in the crowd. 

" The superfluous use of coaches hath been the occasion of 
many vile and odious crimes, as murder, theft, cheating, hang- 
ings, whippings, pillories, stocks, and cages; for housekeeping 
never decayed till coaches came into England, till which time 
those were accounted the best men who had most followers 
and retainers ; then, land about or near London was thought 
dear enough at a noble the acre yearly ; and a ten-pound house- 
rent now, was scarce twenty shillings then ; but the witchcraft 
of the coach quickly mounted the price of all things (except 
poor men's labor), and withal, transformed, in some places, 10, 
20, 30, 40, 50, 60, or 100 proper servingmen, into two or three 
animals, videlicet, a butterfly page, a trotting footman, a stiff- 
drinking coachman, a cook, a dark, a steward, and a butler: 
which hath enforced many a discarded tall fellow (through 


342 CITIES. 

want of means to live, and grace to guide him in Lis poverty) 
to fall into such mischievous actions before-named j for which I 
think the gallowses in England have devoured as many lusty 
valiant men within these thirty or forty years, as would have 
been a sufficient army to beat the foes of Christ out of Christen- 
dome, and marching to Constantinople, have plucked the great 
Turk by the beard ; but, as is aforesaid, this is the age wherein 
the world runs on wheels." — Taylor the Water Poet's 
Works, part ii. p. 242. 

Cities generally begin by the eiForts of mere laborers to ob- 
tain employment and ready money; fishermen, boatmen, and 
porters, who flock to places where passengers and produce are 
landing and leaving. Then comes another set of money-seekers, 
with provisions, goods, and wares to sell, and tavern and board- 
ing supplies, for local and transient customers : and years will 
sometimes pass by before the place obtains the appearance of a 
town, beyond the wharves, sheds, huts, and taverns, necessary 
for the actual accommodation of the business and shelter of 
passengers, and those engaged in the manual employments of 
the place. 

If the location be unhealthy, or a mere interposit, as Chagres, 
or Schuylkill Haven, it will hold its primitive condition for 
ages ; or, if it be a water-power, or manufacturing site, it will, 
in like manner, maintain its original state, as Lowell and Bran- 
dy wine ; but if it has inherent inducements for commerce, such 
as New York and New Orleans, and strong inducements for 
enterprise, peddlers, hucksters, and traders come, who, upon 
accumulating fortunes, soon indulge their propensities for imi- 
tation, by spacious buildings and sumptuous living. Then 
comes a town, and, after this, a city. 

The first swell is made by the successful porters, mechanics, 
and tradesmen, without the least pretension to education or 
refinement, and whose only claim to distinction is the posses- 
sion of money. Their numbers are augmented by swarms of 
ignorant and lazy clowns from the neighboring county; greedy 
adventurers from adjacent villages; and desperate knaves from 
other cities and foreign parts ; who keep up a perpetual succe- 
daneum of vulgar and ignorant display. 

The struggle for gain, show, and indulgence, by this promis- 
cuous and ferocious^ city crowd, presents to the eye of a 
stranger all the brilliant and startling changes of a revolving 
kaleidoscope; but, to the experienced observer, it exhibits a 

cities. 343 

throng of sly and selfish gamesters, stimulated by vanity, lust, 
and avarice. 

Their origin is apt to be unsound and impure; they spring 
from grog-shops, and persons of low condition, fugitives, and 

The instances are rare of persons of education, intelligence, 
and true pride, in the country, mixing with the sordid pursuits 
and depraved propensities of large cities. They prefer to re- 
main in the quiet and recuperative employments of rural life, 
where millions spend their lives in manly and refreshing labor, 
and mental improvement, amidst the blessings of peace, health, 
and independence. 

This hidden line of demarkation lies between intelligence, 
temperance, and honor on one side, and wickedness and po- 
verty on the other; and the result of this comparison is that, 
while families in the country maintain for ages a pure and 
steady reputation, and permanently abide on their hereditary 
farms, the residents of cities hold but doubtful integrity, un- 
certain homes, and precarious subsistence ; their children are 
ushered into a dazzling and corrupt world, amidst idleness and 
profanity ; their licentious propensities are indulged, until, by 
dissolute habits and ruined health, sooner or later they scatter 
away amongst brothels, almshouses, prisons, and graveyards. 

The inhabitants of cities may, therefore, be classed as fol- 
lows : — ■ 

1. Those with which cities begin, and similar materials with 
which they are supplied; who, having obtained wealth, are 

2. A class who assume to themselves a distinct position, and 
swell themselves into vulgar and laughable grandeur. 

3. The perfumed, cigar-smoking, drunken offspring of class 
No. 2, who strut, bully, and perish. 

4. The millions of open and covert thieves, gamblers, knaves, 
grog-sellers, and rioters, who lurk and subsist by clandestine 
traffic, violence, and fraud. 

5. The few respectable and honest persons, who are enticed 
to cities for subsistence, and mechanical and professional em- 
ployments, and some for fashionable amusements. 

This is the best and most favorable picture which can 
honestly be given of the population of large cities. 

The craft and subtlety of class No. 2 embrace the whole 
range of intellect and intelligence, from the idiot to the man of 
science and refinement ; from the beggar to the banker ; from 

344 cities. 

the footpad to the psalm-singing hypocrite; and they are so im- 
perceptibly diffused through all the channels of society that 
aggravated crimes are excused and pardoned, under the frivolous 
pretexts of compassion for connections and friends; when the 
true motive is the sympathy and self-interest of secret con- 
federates and accomplices, or the innate depravity of those who 
privately encourage and screen criminals. 

There is an impulse of malicious delight with too many at 
the success or escape of criminals; and a strong leaning against 
their restraint and punishment. Genteel offenders, who hold 
rank, and have friends, are but seldom brought to justice. 

The glaring frauds and embezzlements in the recent Bank, 
and other moneyed explosions in the United States, were winked 
at, excused, covered up, and smothered off by habeas corpus 
discharges, to prevent their public trials. Where convictions 
would have inevitably followed, not one of those arrogant and 
audacious robbers was ever brought to trial. No court could 
be found, with sufficient purity and independence to hold them 
to answer, much less to punish them. Magnificent rewards 
and distinguished preferments were poured upon the pliant 
functionaries, who excused their secret and fashionable corrup- 
tions. The press was muzzled — no reports of the astounding 
disclosures were published; and no part of the interesting and 
startling investigations, which occupied several months, were 
promulgated; except the insulting evasions of law, and insolent 
perversions of the truth, contained in the judicial opinions by 
which they were released. And this bare-faced and impudent 
outrage was immediately followed up by an unheard-of inter- 
diction, by a co-ordinate functionary, against the movement or 
revival of these accusations by grand juries or otherwise; and 
by repeated indemnity to, and pardon of fugitive rogues; so 
that these infamous crimes were hushed up; all the forms of 
law were trodden into the ground ; and the plundered commu- 
nity were told that their judicial and executive institutions were 
not intended for the detection and punishment of genteel scoun- 
drels: and the culprits stalked abroad, deriding their ruined 
victims, and defying justice. 

These instances of flagrant legal indemnity and public apa- 
thy emphatically index the last and the lowest point to which 
the perpetrations of crime may be carried by fashionable robbers, 
in the polluted arenas of large cities. 

The spirit of rivalry and competition in cities, in every de- 

cities. 345 

partment and relation of society, is carried to the utmost point 
of seventy. 

All the political, professional, business, and social relations, 
by squads and cliques, are used to subserve unfair preferments 
for one set, and for the disparagement and persecution of others. 

The rich, and those whose means enable them to live in 
better style than mechanics and small tradesmen, contemn and 
deride their supposed inferiority. 

The arrogant public functionary, lawyer and doctor, the 
purse-proud merchant, the insignificant coxcomb, and the 
fashionable bully, insult the feelings and underrate the condi- 
tion of all who are not of their particular caste, or within their 
special circle. 

No credit, character, or merit is allowed or conceded to a 
beginner, however worthy, meritorious, or pure. With men 
in place or power, no familiarity, kindness, or accommodation 
is vouchsafed. 

While favorites are complimented and indulged, all others 
are reproved, lectured, snubbed, and rudely pushed aside. 

Gamblers, knaves, and swindlers, who would not be allowed 
to remain one day in the country, find in cities toleration for 
fraudulent trading, unlawful stock-jobbing, heartless usury and 
extortion ; and insolently maintain a conventional code for 
themselves, by which integrity and intelligence are sneered at, 
and money is made the only standard of respectability. 

The more genteel and wary of this class are often secretly 
concerned in gaming-tables, ycleped club-houses, or other cheat- 
ing contrivances, such as getting up banks and insurance com- 
panies, and other swindling schemes, collecting and embezzling 
the subscriptions, forging certificates of stock and loan, and 
then bursting up; and, if prosecuted, bribing their way through 
by habeas corpus, and nol. pros., and reorganizing under some 
other corporate name, and so repeating these infamous plots for 
plunder and rapine. 


" If God were in love with fashions, he were never better 
served than in this age ; for our world is like a pageant, where 
every man's apparel is better than himself. Once Christ said 
that soft clothing is in king's courts; but'now it is crept into 
every house. Then the rich glutton jetted in purple every 
day; but now the poor unthrift jets as brave as the glutton, 
with so many circumstances about him, that if ye could see 

34G pies. 

how Pride would walk herself, if she did wear apparel, she 
would even go like many in the streets ; for she could not go 
braver, nor look stouter, nor mince finer, nor set on more laces, 
nor make larger cuts, nor carry more trappings about her, than 
our ruffians and wantons do at this day. How far are these 
fashions altered from those leather coats which God made in 
Paradise ! If their bodies did change forms so often as their 
apparel chaugeth fashions, they should have more shapes than 
they have fingers and toes. As Jeroboam's wife disguised her- 
self that the prophet might not know her, so we may think 
that they disguise themselves that God might not know them. 
Nay, they disguise their bodies so, till they know not them- 
selves ; for the servant goeth like the master ; the handmaid 
like her mistress; the subject like the prince; as though he 
had forgotten his calling, and mistook himself, like a man in 
the dark, which puts on another man's coat for his own, that is 
too wide, or too side for his body; so their attires are so unfit 
for their bodies, so unmeet for their calling, so contrary to 
nature, that I cannot call them fitter than the monsters of ap- 
parel. For the giants were not so monstrous in nature as their 
attires are in fashion ; that if they could see their apparel but 
with the glance of a spiritual eye, how monstrous it makes 
them, like apes, and puppets, and vices, they would fling away 
their attire as David flung away Saul's armor, and be as much 
ashamed of their clothes as Adam was of his nakedness." — 
Henry Smith's Sermons, p. 208. 

The blandishments of fashionable life and the hypocrisies 
of the church are used as screens for secret gambling, for 
frauds and conspiracies, which are audaciously denominated 
11 fair business transactions; and the harmless excitement of 
gentlemen at cards." 

Still these men get influence and obtain power ; they have 
money, educate their children, give their sons professions, mix 
about at public places with respectable persons, profess to dis- 
countenance the ignorant and vulgar, give expensive and bril- 
liant entertainments, in which they gather in leading men, 
prominent politicians, and distinguished functionaries; loom 
largely at church and watering places, and thus acquire an arti- 
ficial tone and rank which passes off for respectability and real 
elevation of character. 

cities. 347 


" The decoration of the body is the dcvoration of the sub- 
stance; the back wears the silver that would do better in the 
purse. Armenta vertuntur in ornamenta : the grounds are un- 
stocked to make the back glister. Adam and Eve had coats of 
beasts' skins; but now many beasts, flesh, skins, and all, will 
scarce furnish a prodigal younger son of Adam with a suit. 
And, as many sell their tame beasts in the country, to enrich 
their wild beasts in the city, so you have others, that, to revel 
at a Christmas, will ravel out their patrimonies. Pride and 
good husbandry are neither kith nor kin : but Jabal and 
Jubal are brethren : Jabal, that dwelt in tents, and tended the 
herds, had Jubal to his brother, who was the father of Music ; 
to show that Jabal and Jubal, Frugality and Music, Good 
Husbandry and Content, are brothers, and dwell together. 
But Pride and Opulency may kiss in the morning, as a mar- 
ried couple, but will be divorced before sunset. They whose 
fathers could sit and tell their Michaelmas hundredths, have 
brought December on their estates, by wearing May on their 
backs all the year. 

" This is the plague and clog of the fashion, that it is never 
unhampered of Debets. Pride begins with Habeo, ends with 
Debeo ; and sometimes makes good every syllable yradatim. 
Thus the substance is emptied for a show ; and many rob them- 
selves of all they have to put a good suit on their backs." — 
Thomas Adams, Devil's Banquet, p. 72. 

Illustrations could be given, that would hardly be credited, 
by persons ignorant of the tolerated and fashionable wicked- 
ness which prevails in large cities. 

Thousands, as peddlers, from stalls and shambles, through 
small shops, auction-stores, and secret combinations to vouch 
for and recommend each other, worm themselves up as jobbers; 
and hundreds from the kennels and gutters are hired by these 
spurious dealers to spunge out and drag up buyers. 

These by degrees sometimes creep into stores, as porters, 
salesmen — get foothold as partners, and take stand as mer- 

Thousands, without education or fitness, rush into the pro- 
fessions, and into every light and easy pursuit, because they 
are too lazy to work; and thus there is cast upon the surface, in 
all the occupations, a swarm of ignorant and desperate adven- 
turers, and supercilious, base-born, low-bred quacks and petti- 

348 cities. 

foggers, who compose a numerous, very prominent, and perni- 
cious portion of the community. 

They have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. 

If in the professions, they insult and traduce those who are 
respectable and fit, and defraud the public by their ignorance 
and presumption. 

And the whole raft spend their lives in flagrant combina- 
tions, alternately to bull and bear the market, to over-buy, over- 
bid, and over-sell; to forestall, monopolize, inflate, overrate, 
depress, and destroy the prices and the value of every kind of 
property ; and slur and defy morality and industry. 

They revel in the immunities granted to corporations ; in the 
disinterested organization and benevolent management of banks, 
insurance offices, and savings fund societies ; all of which are 
devoutly intended for the exclusive facility and advantage of 
the enterprising tradesman and the industrious mechanic, who 
have not the time nor the proper knowledge for these vital 
and essential matters of political economy, and in whose name, 
and for whose ostensible use, these accomplished villains get up 
their infamous contrivances, and unblushingly pervert them to 
the purposes of extortion and plunder. 

The elder and deacon of a church, and president of an in- 
surance company, who entertained none but divines and godly 
men, daily rode with powdered head, and liveried and brilliant 
equipage ; managed to vamp up the shares of his company by 
declaring large dividends, ostensibly out of the profits, but 
really off of the capital, until it was all gone; and then sold out 
above par, owning nearly all the shares, and robbed the public 
more than three times of the entire stock. 

A saddler and a hatter got to be bank directors, and joined 
a set of lazy knaves, obtained a charter for a bank. 

One went largely into the importation of hides and tallow, 
lived and rode about like a prince, married, and splendidly por- 
tioned off a daughter, broke, and died a drunkard. 

The other soon left his shop for a store on the wharf, and 
became a shipper; in some three or four years, he was tried and 
convicted for cheating his underwriters, served out his time 
in the penitentiary, and left his son to fleece the public by 
other schemes of plunder, as a gentleman ! 

Another bird of prey, who fled from London for forgery, 
changed his name, joined a church, assumed most pious gra- 
vity, became secretary of an institution, and, living fat for 

cities. 349 

many sumptuous years, died insolvent, and was buried in proud 
and solemn pomp. After when, it was found that the stock of 
his feasted friends had all been pawned and hypothecated. 

The directors of another corporation appointed from them- 
selves a president and secretary, forged certificates of their 
loans and stock, and, for years, used, pawned, and sold these 
spurious issues to the amount of more than eight hundred 
thousand dollars. 

When their villainies were detected, they made scapegoats 
of the bellows-blowers, who were, after some twenty-five re- 
sisted efforts, finally convicted for fraud, and sentenced to the 

One, being flush, got pardoned within twenty- four hours; 
and the other, not being just at that juncture so well prepared, 
had his case deferred; but, within about three months, the re- 
quired facilities were obtained, and he was promptly and honor- 
ably pardoned also. 

Their misfortunes were kindly overlooked; one of them very 
soon obtained a semi-foreign function; and the other became 
an active popular political leader, and more than once controlled 
the nomination and election of a member of Congress. 

The ignorant and impudent son of a country tavern-keeper, 
celebrated "for the art of self-defence," and winning at u sweat- 
cloth," and for training and keeping "season horses," began his 
city career with a small grocery and dram-shop, to which he 
put a still-pot in his yard, raised a horse and dray, and carted 
about his kegs to the pop-shops; then opened a liquor store; in 
about five years, became an exporter of his own brewed gin and 
brandy; moved his family from an alley into a main street; 
jumped off of his dray-shaft into his coach ; was a director of a 
bank that broke ; furnished most gorgeously his spacious man- 
sion-house, and invited to it persons of education and character, 
who did not come. 

A country lad held and watered horses at the stopping 
places, slept in stables, got to be an omnibus-boy, then a shop- 
porter, a bar-tender, then a salesman, merchant, and bank di- 
rector; and lived for years amidst feasting and drinking, and 
died of apoplexy. 

A superficially educated upstart loomed and swelled out with 
plethoric affectations of delicacy, refinement, and political econo- 
my; wrote pamphlets, courted and flattered persons in place 
and power; prated of, and composed sophistries on financial 

350 CITIES. 

philosophy, and on the scientific circulation and skillful hypo- 
thecation of joint stock capital. 

At length, by a league of organized importunities and con- 
curring contingencies, he obtained the sceptre of corporation 
sway, accommodated and enlisted thousands of gamblers upon 
'Change and in politics; issued and"embezzled unregistered mil- 
lions; alternately expanded and contracted; suddenly shifted 
and capriciously changed the spheres of splendid bounty and 
lawless ruin; banished all other exchanges and mediums, and 
boldly defied the nation and its exchequer ; sported in spasmo- 
dic and remorseless schemes of debauchery and fraud ; tortured 
and laid waste the morals and industry of one age, and cor- 
rupted and polluted the next generation with the loathsome 
infections of idleness and villainy. 

Millions upon millions were squandered, and the perpetra- 
tors have rotted into the earth. 

Before the abolition of slavery and corporeal punishments, 
the convicts were but seldom imprisoned; they were sentenced 
to be hanged or cropped, branded or whipped, or to stand in the 
pillory; and every market-day, at eleven o'clock, some of these 
inflictions were made by the keeper of the prison. 

The owners of slaves had the power to take them to the 
prison and have them put in the slave-pen, as is now practiced 
in Charleston and all slave cities, and to order such punishment 
as they chose. 

The philosophy of the whole theory resting upon the humane 
and reasonable hypothesis that the master's interest in the 
slave, on all occasions, would be an abundant safeguard against 

The scourge and the knife, these emblems of barbarous 
power, were publicly flourished up without notice, except by 
the rabble, who occasionally hurled showers of missiles upon 
the helpless victims. 

The literal and dextrous perpetration of these vindictive 
and summary judgments was held to be a matter of great refine- 
ment and skill, and just in proportion to the pecuniary induce- 
ments tendered to the executioner by the culprit or his prose- 
cutors, was the real or apparent severity of his punishment. 

But, for the destitute and friendless slave, there was no 
escape ; the thong fell like a rod of red hot iron on his naked 

Well, when the old jail stood at the south-west corner of 

CITIES. 351 

Third and Market Streets, in Philadelphia, and the whipping- 
post and pillory stood at the west end of the Market-house, on 
the east side of Third Street, and the inmates of the prison, of 
nil ages and sexes, were huddled into oue promiscuous den, and 
the keeper kept a dram-shop, and lived with his family in the 
prison, and his daughters served out pennyworths of grog and 
bean broth to the prisoners, and the keeper and his sons were 
the only inspectors and scourgers: 

In those good old days of primitive and ferocious simplicity, 
there was a sturdy villain, who thus for years lived rent-free, 
and fattened on the spoils and fees of this office of hell. 

His large and hopeful family grew up, and are scattered wide 
and proud. 

To those who knew of their juvenile occupations, and see 
their present affectations of respectability, the comparison is 

Fortunately for this base and degraded class of beings, the 
average life of man is but twenty-one years, and the unfash- 
ionable reminiscences of the past, from the imperious and vital 
necessities of the vulnerable, are classed with the independent 
propensities of the critical. 

In a single city in the United States, there were two banks, 
and three other joint stock companies, with an aggregate capital 
of thirteen millions; the projectors of which, in advance, artfully 
vamped up the stock three or four times above its par ; so that, 
at the place of subscription, there were mobs of bare-headed 
and half-naked thousands, whose savage yells, and brutal strug- 
gles for the fortified loopholes, into which but two or three 
hands could be thrust, beggared all description. 

These degrading scenes continued at intervals of four or five 
years ; the protruding fist contained the name of the applicant, 
with his first instalment; the inside commissioners by turns, 
and at their option, took from, and returned to a single clutch- 
in g hand the limited modicum of scrip. 

If the hands were not known to the impartial commissioner, 
they writhed in vain and wincing agony. This insulting farce 
lasted a few hours for three days, ostensibly to give the beloved 
public an opportunity for safe investment of their honest gains. 
The sequel showed that no scrip passed out through the 
loophole but to the jacks and bullies of those inside. 

The remainder, of course, not being asked for, was in stipends 
portioned off to lobby and other members of the legislature; 

352 cities. 

rewards for nominating the commissioners, and to sop them for 
future frauds; and the balance was equally divided amongst, 
and taken by the scoundrels inside, from no motive but to keep 
the charter from being lapsed, and to vitalize a great and glori- 
ous benefaction for the innocent and hard-working community. 

Precipitate charter organization was then urged by unflinch- 
ing perjuries, that the required cash instalments had been paid 
in; instead of which, they only held their own promissory notes, 
" To my own order," including most, if not all, the loophole 

The commissioners of all these institutions were nearly the 
same persons, with their names so mixed as to elude notice; 
from which a set of directors and officers for each institution was 
made, so that, by a comparison of the roll of all the directors, it 
was found that the whole string of sixty or seventy directors 
and officers was composed of some twenty-five or thirty men, 
all of whom had been commissioners; thus conclusively proving 
the existence and success of the conspiracy. 

They and their accomplices issued millions upon millions of 
shin-plasters, and carried into an inflated market a paper capital 
of thirteen millions, with which they swaggered off, and bullied 
down the public. 

This capital stock they increased to twenty-six millions by 
hypothecating their unpaid for thirteen millions of spurious 
stock upon their own paper, to their "own order," and by cut- 
ting certificates from the blank book, and forging out to them- 
selves unregistered certificates of stock to any amount their 
cupidity required. 

It was also ascertained that this infamous combination of 
crafty rogues held, and regularly occupied pews, maintained 
town and country palaces, drove gorgeous equipages, entertained 
crowds in princely splendor, secretly gambled by cards, lotte- 
ries, election wagers, pools and stakes of thousands; inflated, 
bulled, and depressed the stock market, and regrated and fore- 
stalled the cotton, grain, and land market at will. 

And thus, by a well-concocted and thief-like moneyed conspi- 
racy, fraudulently controlled all these great elements of finance 
and trade, until their blistering, noxious bubbles burst, spread- 
ing destruction and ruin throughout an entire community. 

The finale of this single instance of confederated villainy pre- 
sented, in addition to the spoliations of twenty-six millions of 
spurious capital, more than two millions of corporation loans, 

cities, 853 

five millions of their individual borrowing, upon hypothecations 
of store house certificates, and other forged bills, notes, and 
paper; making a loss to the people of more than thirty millions 
by the villainies of this single nest of scoundrels within ten 

Such was the mysterious delusion and effectual control in 
which they held the public that their scandalous malversations 
were winked at, and openly excused. 

Executives and judges were flattered by splendid hospitalities, 
and tampered with by gratuities, offers of participations in bril- 
liant schemes for affluence. 

The weeping lamentations of beggared families with disbanded 
retinues, and broken-down establishments, and of indicted par- 
ticipants, were everywhere sympathized. Judicial inquiry was 
denounced as brutal; prosecutors were publicly abused, in open 
court, as " ferocious ivolvcs" and put in fashionable Coventry, 
as vulgar misanthropes; the insolent reproach and excuse on 
all sides were, of "fair business transactions" and of "unfortu- 
nate speculations," and "the harmless excitement of gentlemen." 

And thus, by morbid and corrupt sympathy, habeas corpus 
discharge, quashed indictments, disagreements, and refusals of 
juries to find verdicts, new trials, executive pardons to fugitive 
renegades, and presently for convicts, without the key turn; 
this band of heartless robbers were corruptly and promptly 
whitewashed, and turned loose, to insult the plundered commu- 
nity, and mock to scorn the laws of God and man. 

They held the same cabalistic compact by signs, signals, and 
secret convocations, at club-houses, private parties, and at each 
other's habitations, as is practiced by blacklegs, footpads, and 
passers of counterfeit money. 

This same system of accomplished and refined villainy has 
been perpetrated over the whole country, upon a larger and 
smaller scale, for years past. 

Most of the miscreants have sunk into the earth; but some 
have survived, to feast upon their plundered spoils, and join 
with new recruits in other schemes for plunder and fraud. 

This picture is not only true in all its lines and shades, but 
in every tint and hue. 

Its literal demonstration was incontestably established by un- 
contradicted reports of committees, of swindled stockholders, 
insolvent and bankrupt examinations, and the criminal prose- 
cutions of the culprits. And they were never denied except by 


354 cities. 

the reckless perpetrators, their accomplices, polluted minions, 
and corrupt presses. 

Where crime holds popular and fashionable sympathy, it 
baffles law, and goes unwhipt of justice. 

Justice in one hand holds a sword, and with the other weighs 
before she strikes. 

Her eyes and strength are firmly fixed upon the golden beam 
to guard its sure and righteous poise ; murmurs and shouts al- 
ternate thrill the eager crowd, as fall and lift the trembling 
scales ; vibration quickens to its solemn pause. 

The quivering index moves not back, but downward leans 
towards guilt ; prostrate, the victim writhes before unflinching 
power. The mighty arm uplifts, and smites the awful blow. 
Amidst suspense for fearful test of truth, adroit and cunning 
vice tricked out the iron hilt, and for the unconscious grasp 
slipped in a velvet lash. 

The culprit is unharmed, and, in triumphant scorn, mocks 
the dumb show of codes and laws against cunning subtilties 
and gilded craft, with fashionable knaves. 

The fortunes of the artificial and pestilent ingredients of so- 
ciety referred to arc as varied as the capricious undulations of 
the ocean. 

Their signs, and names, and firms, and entire families, and 
groups, rise and fall, as if by equinoctial storms they were an- 
nually swept away. 

Their characters and conduct literally correspond with the 
common sportsman. 

They are wholly ignorant, have no libraries, never read any- 
thing but newspapers, and by their countenance, conversation, 
and conduct betray the watchful spirit, suspicious look, restless 
temper, and the sulky cunning of the blackleg and the foot- 

Their children are turned into the streets with full purses 
and costly clothes, to swell through the town as crack rowdies, 
without restraint or discipline, smoking and drinking in oyster- 
cellars and brothels, swearing and bragging through gaming- 
saloons, and betting and flashing at race-grounds and gambling- 

It requires no prophetic inspiration to nominate the unflinch- 
ing catastrophe by which they are so soon plunged into the 
kennels of abomination and obscurity from which they came. 

cities. 355 


" There is such a curse goes along with an ill-gotten estate 
that he that leaves such a one to his child doth but cheat and 
deceive him, makes him believe -he has left him wealth, but 
has withal put such a canker in the bowels of it, that it is sure 
to eat it out. Would to God it were as generally laid to heart 
as it seems to be generally taken notice of ! Then surely pa- 
rents would not account it a reasonable motive to unjust deal- 
ing, that they may thereby provide for their children ; for this 
is not away of providing for themj nay, 'tis the way to spoil 
them of whatever they have lawfully gathered for them ; the 
least mite of unlawful gain being of the nature of leaven, 
which sours the whole lump, bringing down curses upon all a 
man possesseth." — Whole Duty of Man, l±th Sunday. 

Loathsome and degrading as are all these practical infirmities 
of dense and crowded populations, to the honor of human na- 
ture, there are many, in all the American cities, who are indus- 
trious and frugal in their habits, and honest and proficient in 
their callings and professions. 

But the aggregate of their morals and intelligence falls far 
short of the purity, simplicity, benevolence, and intellectual 
elevation of the inhabitants of the country. 

Extravagance, bad passions, inordinate desires, morbid and 
angry excitements, sophistries, and falsehood, indolence, insur- 
rections, violence, and rapine are engendered by, and spring up 
amidst the vices and pollutions of large cities. 

There should not be too much encouragement given to these 
hotbeds of crime, these schools and nurseries for gamblers and 
gluttons, these hiding-places and fortified entrenchments in all 
ages for armed soldiers, noblemen, military chieftains, kings, 
emperors, and tyrants. 

The pastoral elements of society have never engendered 
these gross and gigantic evils. 

Those who are unexposed to pestilence and crime live in 
health and honor; while thousands perish by their proximity 
to contagion and temptation. 

Cities are the theatres of infection and vice, scenes of deso- 
lation to honest men, by the bankruptcies of adventurers and 
rogues, and of conflagrations by mobs. 

356 cities. 

These agitations are not incident to the country, and never 
disturb its repose, unless by eruptions from large towns. 

All honest men should revolt at and abhor the degrading 
distinctions encouraged by these sinks of shame and infamy. 

The healthy employments and the innocent pursuits of agri- 
culture purify and elevate the mental aspirations, and invigor- 
ate and ennoble the organic functions of man. 

Here there is security, harmony, and abundance for all whose 
reasonable and temperate aspirations conform to the wise and 
bounteous dispensations of a just and holy Providence. 


Labor is part of the punishment appointed for the primal 
sin : "Now man, instead of patience in bearing this yoke, and 
obedience in undertaking this task, and conforming himself to 
God's law, desires nothing so much as to frustrate the sentence 
of God, and to avoid the punishment ; especially in these last 
days, which is the old age of the world, we intend nothing 
more than our idleness and sloth, sometimes under the fair 
show of sanctity. Whereas certain it is that all honest callings 
and vocations of men, they are God's own ordinance ; in per- 
forming them we do God service; bis orat qui bene labor at ; the 
works have the force of a prayer, as implicitly desiring God to 
concur with his own means. They are likewise in the nature 
of sacrifices, as being actions well-pleasing, and commanded by 
God himself. Think them not base ; do not neglect them with 
any foolish fancy and conceit of thine own purity ; for God 
hath appointed them, and he shall one day take the accounts 
of thy labor in this kind. But the general practice of this 
world is to give over all painful, manual, and laborious profes- 
sions, and to desire to live by their wits ; as if the state of 
man were wholly angelical, and that his hunger could be satis- 
fied with knowledge, his thirst quenched with sweet meditation, 
and his back clothed with good precepts; or, as if every part 
should ambitiously aspire to the perfection of an eye. For 
scholars are infinite ; lawyers innumerable ; cities swarm and 
abound with multitudes, and every company complains of com- 
pany : but tillage, husbandry, and manual labor were never 
more neglected. We do not desire to gain from nature, so to be- 
nefit ourselves, and to enrich the whole kingdom : but we desire 
with the fineness and quiddities of our own wits, to gain from 

cities. 357 

others; and we must breed up our children as clerks in some 
office. And hence it is that our wants were never so great; 
the tricks and shifts of many were never so shameful and dis- 
honest j for they that know best to live riotously in a wasteful 
course of expense know least what belongs to the labor and 
difficulty in getting/' — Goodman's Fall of Man, p. 246. 

The policy and wisdom of these United States is to foster 
the spread of population, and to discourage its needless accu- 
mulation, and its dangerous and pernicious moneyed aristo- 
cracy, always incident to swelling villages and opulent cities. 

To educate and qualify their children with a taste and with 
talents, not so much, as has been the custom heretofore, for 
merchandizing and professions, the expensive living and un- 
certain and perilous pursuits of crowded cities, as for the me- 
chanical arts, scientific employments, and the productive and 
independent occupations of the fields. 

To cherish learning, and encourage genius and industry, and 
mainly those arts and pursuits which most develop the trea- 
sures, and increase the fruits of the earth ; to supersede the 
pretexts for luxuries, and the pernicious rise of credit, capital, 
and trade, by a rigid resolution to make temperance, industry, 
integrity, and the simplicities of living fashionable ; and, in 
like manner, to purify and keep clean all the fountains and 
streams of the public weal. 

The republican strength and security of this blessed land 
lie with the husbandmen, whose glorious heritage is scattered 
wide and far upon the dells and plains of this mighty conti- 
nent ; from whose blooming farms and virtuous homes a peo- 
ple's fragrant prayers and pious homage emanate to Heaven ; 
for which in love and hope they hold the sovereign power to 
rule and sway the sacred boon of peace and lawful liberty from 
shore to shore. 



Factions — Frauds — Offices — Intrigues — Improvements — Pavements — Cho- 
lera — Factions — Ignorance — Mechanics — Aldermen — Police — Malefac- 
tors — Riots — Mayors — Military — Conflagration — Health offices — Alms- 
houses — Monarchies — Mobs — Political parties — Majorities — Honesty — 
Best men — Rogues — Remedy — Parties — Ward meetings — Registers — 
Suffrage — Qualification of voters — Candidates to be examined by a 
board of censors — Pimps — Spies — Speech-makers — Brawlers and leaders 
— Fires — Fire-Companies not allowed by the Romans — Remedy — How 
they should be organized — Lynching — Mobs — Riots — Order — Law — 
Peace-marshal — Police — Security — Public peace. 

A brief summary of a few of the official corporation, political, 
and other obliquities, especially prevalent in towns and cities, 
with some suggestions for their remedy, is now proposed to be 

The local affairs of towns, cities, and counties, their lights, 
roads, streets, bridges, strays, water, police, &c, all of which 
could be abundantly attended to by one competent and faithful 
magistrate, even in the largest cities, are in some places, where 
the population and property are large, made to serve the most 
abusive purposes of political and party strife, and personal spe- 

Intrigues for Low Office. — " Histories are daily written which 
discover the subtilties and tricks of state : but sure it is that 
there is as much false dealing, close practices, cunning sugges- 
tions, dissimulation, breach of promises, and every way as much 
dishonesty, in a petty, poor, base, paltry corporation, for the 
choice of their town clerk, their bailiff, or some such officer, 
as you shall find among the great bashaws, for the upholding 
and supporting of the Turkish empire." — Goodman's Fall of 
M in, p. 207. 

Halls, chambers, galleries, and other superfluous pageants 
are sometimes made ; chartered privilege for taxation, organiza- 
tions of mayor, double legislative departments, tax collectors, 


treasurers, chief captains, marshals, head men, and high consta- 
bles, municipal courts, judges, and recorders, are arranged for 
with separate apartments, and swarms of subordinates, with all 
the affectations, ceremony, and pomp which belong to national 

Large salaries, favor, patronage, contracts, intrigue, corrup- 
tion, peculations, police, knavery, petty oppression, and open 
negligence of required duty are unblushingly perpetrated with- 
out stint. 

If a court-house, a building, a road, a street, or a bridge, re- 
quires to be repaired, or rebuilt, the public may wait for years, 
and in vain. 

Their courts and grand juries may demand from the appro- 
priating departments of these petty governments the funds for 
their execution ; reference to committees and indefinite postpone- 
ments will follow every motion upon the subject; unless the 
contract for the work, and the whole appropriation can be pre- 
viously arranged to suit the views of the insolent and corrupt 
miscreants who thus insult and defy the people. 

In a single city, whose increase of business and population 
had so overswollen its old court-house, and other necessary 
local accommodations, as to have made their confined and inap- 
propriate condition a notorious and common nuisance ; and 
subjected the public archives to constant dilapidation, after 
legislative enactments, authorizing new buildings, and the con- 
currence and urgent request of all the required sources of 
authority, with unexceptionable plans and estimates; a petty 
county board, the whole bunch not worth $10,000, who had the 
power to veto the demanded appropriation, baffled and deviled 
the people for more than twenty years, for no reason but that 
the contracts could not be intrigued for, so as to accommodate 
themselves and their tavern-haunting, rum-drinking associates. 

If an improvement is proposed in the construction of a pier, 
or quay, a street lamp, a gutter, or the size of a paving-stone, 
or a sanitary or police regulation, grave committees are raised, 
whose time is liberally spent in excursions and feastings, at the 
public expense; and of all these pretended efforts for public im- 
provement, no report of any of the hundreds of these commit- 
tees records anything but stupidity and ignorance. 

Upon a recent cholera preliminary, they demanded from a 
number of medical practitioners that, whereas this epidemic is 
generated by choak damp or carbonic acid, by sulphuretted 


hydrogen, and other offensive emanations from privies, and the 
fetid odors from knackers, &e., what measures were necessary 
to render these atmospheric deteriorations innoxious, and thus 
to counteract and defeat the cholera. 

To these prodigious ejaculations of wisdom they received in 
answer, by way of a liber primus hit, from a single respondent, 
the following appropriate rebuke : That every decent man 
and woman should keep their dishes and noses clean ; and if 
there was so much dirt about them as to disturb their neigh- 
bors by its deportation before cold weather comes, that they 
should sprinkle it all over with a quarter dollar's worth of nitrate 
of lead and chloride of zinc, or some other antibromics. And 
when winter time comes, to get moon-catchers, with hooks and 
boxes, to make a thorough exculpation of these morbific influ- 
ences. That, however repulsive and intolerable, to a casual 
observer, all these fetid odors may be, including that from 
dead animals, the spinning of their entrails, and the distillation 
of hartshorn from their bones, &c. ; for many years past, it had 
been discovered, by special and accurate hygienic examination, 
not to affect the workmen and families about them, who soon 
became familiar with and unconscious of the inhalation of 
these odors. 

And that the numerous and effectual purifying agents for 
all these noxious odors, by the most conclusive and fatal ex- 
periments, had been found to possess no disinfecting power 
over febrific malaria. 

A city legislature, composed of some twenty or thirty igno- 
rant politicians, had to be told these simple facts, which every 
woman and child knows who has Tead any compendium upon 
useful knowledge, or the respectable newspapers and magazines 
of the day. 

A majority of the members of the conventions and delegations 
from whom their nominations emanate are boisterous bullies, 
without homes or employment ; who never pay their debts ; 
hold no property, and pay no taxes. And the ward and dis- 
trict meetings where these delegates are chosen are always held 
in the night, amidst the uproar of tumultuous rabbles brought 
there from other districts, and plied with rum by the gamesters 
and factions to overawe and bully down the people. 

No registers are used to test the right of suffrage ; and all 
order and integrity of proceeding are lost in the violence of a 


<7ra voce yell, and the false proclamation of a corrupted presi- 

The scenes of horror and desecration exhibited in some of 
these attic ward-rooms and odious rum-holes beggar all the 
ferocities of aboriginal savagism. 

Entire city and county legislature delegations by these infa- 
mous denshave been nominated, and by faction, frauds, and 
riotous excitements been elected, who have been wholly un- 
known to their constituents. 

No directories or assessors' lists will indicate their names, 
abodes, occupations, or one dollar's worth of property they ever 

They are reckless, irresponsible, ignorant, corrupt, and venal ; 
with gross and depraved animal appetites, and the most aban- 
doned moral and sensual propensities. 

At the distance of every square or two, there is a dingy recess 
with a sign on it in large letters : — 




In one city there have been more than three hundred com- 
missioned police officers, with a Mayor and Recorder, at an 
annual expense of $130,000. 

They profess to watch and guard, by blocks and beats, the 
entire city day and night. 

Thousands of fights and riots, mobs, fires, and murders 
occurred ; not half of them were published in the newspapers. 
No one ever heard of the arrest of a criminal at these scenes 
of outrage, or of the presence or interference of the police. 

They stand at corners, smoke cigars, and stare at female 
passengers ; impudently swagger through the streets with large 
clubs, talk politics, pimp, and spy out a dirty tub or a carriage 
waiting for the proper accommodation of the owner ; or pick 
up some poor inebriated countrymen, not the rowdies ; for they 
consort with them, and sue for and pocket half the fines. 

They constantly annoy, persecute, and bully the people; 
but render them, no indemnity against robbers, conflagration, 
and murder. 

No forger or burglar was ever arrested by them unless for 


reward; and their corrupt collusiou with these scoundrels is no 
longer denied. 

At the recent riots in Philadelphia, from 18-44 to 1849, an 
average of two thousand military and special police were on 
duty, at a cost of $60,000; by whom, and their mounted cen- 
turions, the streets were insolently patrolled and blocked up for 
days. Full warning was openly given of the intended aggres- 

The police was present at these riots and fires in quadrupli- 
cation. Loud and vapid harangues were ejaculated by them 
from fire-plugs and cab-tops. 

A squad of some forty or fifty ruffians, most of them half- 
grown boys, clambered over each other's shoulders, dashed in 
the windows, and fired the immense and splendid structures; 
tore down chancels and altars; ripped open magnificent and in- 
valuable libraries of learning and science; and amidst hellish 
shouts and demoniac yells dashed their desecrated plunder into 
the flames. 

The entire bevy of miscreants could and would have been 
knocked down and dragged out by this police four to one, if 
they had been ordered to do it. No blow was struck; no arm 
was raised; not one of these ruthless scoundrels was there 
touched or Las been since then arrested or brought to justice. 

All the world beheld with horror this formidable police melt 
away into the crowd, and an audacious mob of not three hun- 
dred, including the aiders, abettors, and all told, in open and un- 
bridled insurrection. 

These perpetrations, on one occasion in Philadelphia, cost in 
pay to the temporary police and military more than $60,000, 
and in damage by fire $160,000. 

Not one check was given to it except the commendable order 
of a militia officer to fire upon the mob in Southwark, which 
presently dispersed them ; and for which the wailings and exe- 
crations of the non-taxpaying idle politicians, and drunken rab- 
ble, who claim to be the law and order, free school loving, dear 
people, were poured out in street corner and town-meeting tor- 

Under the pretext of sanitary precaution, a detestable nuisance 
called a " Health Office," is licensed, which avails itself of its 
ostensible necessities and purposes of philanthropy to obtain 
from time to time from the legislature, the most preposterous 
and oppressive powers, for example : — 


With the sinister pretence of keeping clean and pure the city, 
they dispatch a swarm of odor-scenting pimps into all the 
court-yards and areas, to nose out and report to "the board" 
every noxious tub and pot that sagacity and impartiality can 

These rummage-mangers receive a bounty for every discovery, 
and of course their reports are final. 

The muster-roll of noxious pans and rat-holes is secretly 
registered with an entry that "the Bmrd has declared it a nui- 
sance." An order is issued for its peremptory removal : the 
owner is of course avoided; the abatement is made by their 
scullions, and a lien is filed in court against the property where 
the disinfection is perpetrated. 

When the owner for the first time is wakened up by a writ 
against him, for the fictitious claim, he discovers that he is 
charged ten prices for every item, with a fee of five dollars for 
"a Permit" to be robbed, and twenty-five cents for the oath of 
the scoundrel who swore that he served the spurious and fraudu- 
lent notice on another man. 

And then he is gravely told that the law has given this power 
from necessary emergency to " the Board" and that their orders 
and charges cannot be contradicted. 

So that with the thieving, fires, riots, mobs, gambling, inso- 
lence, plunder, murder, paupers, politicians, health offices, police, 
and free schools, the people who are quiet and mind their own 
business, and who work and save, in these large towns and 
cities, have quite as much to bear as they can stagger under. 

It is no wonder that so few respectable persons remain in 
them, and that they are thus the ready receptacles of so much 
vice and crime. 

The city referred to is certainly not so bad in these respects 
as other cities are; so that the foregoing exposition of facts falls 
far short of the average standard of depravity and crime, noto- 
riously prevalent in these feculent deposits of moral abomina- 

The cause of all these shocking wrongs is owing to the inex- 
cusable neglect of the people. They pay no attention to their 
public affairs. They act upon the supposition that free institu- 
tions and just laws are not susceptible of abuses; and thus leave 
to a few drones and knaves the entire coutrol and management 
of the administration of the government. 

They are reluctant to waste their time and bring themselves 


in personal conflict and strife, at the primary political meetings, 
with rogues and vulgar vagrants in grog-shops at night; to chal- 
lenge, resist, and frustrate their frauds; and expose themselves 
to public criticism and sinister imputations ; and thus for peace 
and quiet they remain at home. 

However convenient this reasoning may be for individual ac- 
commodation, it involves a proposition in morals and politics 
as false as it is censurable. 

Every citizen has a public duty in this respect to perform, for 
the neglect of which he not only incurs the hazard of losing 
his property and his life, and the life of every member of his 
family, but the danger is incurred of a subversion of the free 
institutions of his country. 

In monarchical countries, all the subjects at maturity, and 
upon the ascension to power of a new prince, make to him a 
solemn oath of allegiance ; and this form of government pre- 
supposes that, upon this adhesion to the supreme magistrate, 
the people are excused from public cares, and that he will main- 
tain the stability of the government and protect his subjects. 

That his sacred trust and high office will place him beyond 
the reach of temptation for wrong, with sufficient incentives 
and certain inducements for purity and honor ; and that, there- 
fore, the people may pursue their private affairs without the 
anxieties and responsibilities of government. 

This is the theory of such governments. All the public 
oversight is cast upon the king, and instances arc by no means 
wanting to show the strict and resolute accountability required 
by the people from their sovereigns; and the parental redress 
and vindication accorded by these rulers to their subjects. 

Their courts and their ears, in many countries, are open to 
the petitions of their people, however humble or obscure. 

But, in the United States, the people have abjured, de- 
nounced, and for ever repudiated all this intervening power. 

They deny that there is any authority but with themselves. 

That, as citizens and joint sovereigns of the land, they will 
swear allegiance to none ; that they will make their own laws ; 
fight their own battles; levy their own taxes; and appoint their 
own rulers. 

They, therefore, have no right to omit or neglect to perform 
this duty faithfully, promptly, resolutely, utterly regardless of 
inconvenience, exposure, self-denial, or expense. 


They have voluntarily assumed all the responsibility of main- 
taining eternal vigilance as the price of liberty. 

They have no right to shrink from or excuse themselves 
from it. 

And every pretext to evade it is a mean and unmanly act of 
secret, selfish, sordid treason. 

The whole structure of their free institutions, involving the 
liberties of unborn millions, for whom they have come security, 
is left at the mercy and disposal of ruffians and gamblers. 

To accommodate their pusillanimous, ignoble, and listless 
apathy, and to save a trifle of time and money, and to suit 
their finical and cowardly repugnance for the contact and inso- 
lent opposition of scoundrels, the country is to be surrendered 
to a licentious rabble. 

The patriots of the American Revolution endured a series of 
unequaled privations and sufferings in the achievement of their 
national independence and the establishment of free institu- 

The elements of this great fabric of wisdom and justice in- 
volve a direct recognition of its perpetual liability to the most 
imminent danger from adventurers and demagogues, and the 
most effectual precautions against these abuses by an indemnity 
for equal franchise, the right of suffrage, rotation in office, and 
frequent elections, upon the most careful and rigid system of 
qualifications to voters and officers. 

All these are vital and fundamental principles, lying at the 
basis of the civil compact, and they should be taught by rote 
to every child as soon as he can speak, repeated after his 
prayers, morning and night, and instilled into and engrafted 
upon the very essence of his mental and moral existence. 

There is no human or divine theory of itself that can work out 
practical results. They are mere philosophical abstractions, just 
as liable to be used for bad objects as to be employed for good 

There has been an immeasurable extent of iniquity and out- 
rage perpetrated under the holy mantle of religion ; and an un- 
limited extent of cruelty and oppression committed in the name 
of justice and patriotism. 

Free and equal laws, and pure and sound religion, in the 
hands of crafty hypocrites, are made convenient pretexts and 
plausible pretences for the most atrocious crimes. 

To rely upon the truth and justice of a free code of consti- 


tutional and municipal law for the preservation of peace and 
securing the rights of the people, is as fallacious as to depend 
upon the Holy Scriptures working out the regeneration of de- 
praved and fallen man by the mere act of their being printed 
and circulated. Without practical use and application, they re- 
main as much a dead letter as the unemployed rudiments and 
laws of science. 

The people of the United States, with commendable pride, 
glory in their free institutions and frequent elections. The 
system is almost perfect ; it can do no harm itself, but may be 
abused, and, in many respects, requires amendment. 

As all the powers of government periodically fall back into 
their own hands, they think this is an effectual check upon offi- 
cial abuse ; and so it is, if they will keep it in their own hands. 
The danger of despotic usurpation from hereditary rulers they 
suppose to be wholly prevented by these inherent and recu- 
perative capacities of their system; and so they are, if they will 
use them as they have the power, and as it is their duty to 
employ them. 

They reason honestly, but not wisely. No human device 
can be more perfect in theory, and none so delusive in prac- 
tice. Its purity and grandeur inspire too much confidence and 

It possesses no reserved or conservative restraint upon the 
intrigue of demagogues and factions, nor could it be so framed. 
This power is exclusively reserved to the people, as it should 

By secret and plausible simulations of patriotism, rogues and 
knaves secretly obtain control of the primary springs of the ap- 
pointing and nominating power ; and, whenever the people 
neglect their duty, executive selections are openly made, to 
accommodate as many as can be provided for, and to furnish 
sordid lackeys with the means of intrigue. 

The choice of delegates to make party nominations for the 
elections is also obtained by violence or open fraud; and aban- 
doned profligates are selected by all the parties. 

This degeneration has made as rapid progress in the United 
States as the dramatic excitements produced by the immense 
increase and influx of population, the rivalries in commerce 
and monopolies, and the enthusiasm of novelties and specula- 
tion, would allow. 

There is, with the public functionaries of this people, more 


ignorance, arrogance, neglect, trick, fraud, and perjury, than 
in the countries where orders, titles, and hereditary successions 
prevail, without any controlling power to keep them in awe. 

Where there is a king, or even a despot, with an army be- 
hind these vermin of popular creation, with whom the honest 
and the loyal can rally, there is some safety in seasons of public 
peril ; but in the United States, there will he no shelter in times 
of anarchy and disunion. 

The exigencies of tumult and revolution must then fall back 
with crushing severity upon the aggregate masses of the people. 

In such an emergency, they will find their conservative gua- 
rantee of the ballot-box, as it is now neglected by them, and 
abused by the mob, an impotent and empty barrier against the 
violence of insurrectionary and cut-throat demagogues. 

This is a dim speck in the political horizon, which has thus 
far been concealed from view by the dazzling glories of this 
brilliant and popular scheme. 

At a day, perhaps, not far distant, this gorgeous rainbow will 
melt away, and the credulous advocates of universal and riotous 
suffrage, as it is now desecrated, will discover that it is a per- 
nicious and cruel mockery, if not most resolutely guarded and 
defended ; that the candidates for office, by the negligence and 
apathy of the honest, are selected for their refinements in vice ; 
that the people are robbed of their sovereignty at the elections 
by false and unqualified voters, by perjured thieves, who rifle 
the ballot-box of, and burn the lawful votes, and replace them 
by forged ballots ; and that the administrators of government 
and law are with these profligate harpies, who plunder their 
earnings and savings by peculation, mobs, and taxation. 

This crisis will test a conflict between rapine and the rem- 
nant of the honest patriotism of the American Revolution ; a 
conflict between honest men and a ruthless rabble, in which, 
heretofore, the cut-throats have generally prevailed. 

Before the combustible and destructive materials for this ex- 
plosion are fully generated, the men who own the land, raise 
the subsistence of, and sustain the country, should solemnly 
look about them, and practically act upon the prophetic injunc- 
tion, that eternal vigilance is the price of liberty. 

This is the Wen. — Now for the Knife. 

1. Divide yourselves into as many parties as you will, and by 
any name you choose to go by. 

2. You profess to be gentlemen, to treat each other and your 


opponents with decorum; and that you will be governed by a 
majority of lawful votes. 

3. You aver that you are in earnest; repudiate all insinceri- 
ty, and solemnly proclaim to the world your belief in the in- 
tegrity of your professions; and anxiously desire to obtain 
success for your cause and your party for no object but the 
real good and substantial welfare of society. 

4. You utterly disclaim all connection or affinity with per- 
sons whose lives and conversations are not in strict accordance 
with all the elements of industry, sobriety, and morality ; and 
wholly refuse to accept, and disdain their aid or support. 

5. You invite to your ranks all lawful voters of honor, in- 
dustry, and integrity, without regard to their property or rank, 
and believe that no motive should govern in the choice of public 
agents, but an undivided and single effort to obtain the best and 
most competent officers. 

6. Governed by these just and equitable laws, let every man 
make his choice and promptly join some party, and whatever 
may be his place, or sphere, faithfully attend their meetings. 
The pure and distinguished Bishop White punctually attended 
all the primary ward meetings of his party, took his place in 
the ranks, and was counted off for the choice of election officers, 
and voted at every election. He made no noise, but quietly 
and faithfully fulfilled his duties as a citizen. By these means 
public order will be maintained, bad men kept out of all par- 
ties, and awed down by moral force. 

7. Meet at some place in your ward, or township, the last 
Saturday afternoon of the month, as often as your business shall 

8. But meet in the day time, and never in the night, nor 
at a tavern or dram-shop. 

Trick and fraud, cowardice and violence, shun day and re- 
spectable locations, and seek the night, and scenes of drunken- 
ness and crime. 

9. Close your doors. Let no man, unapproved by your 
society, come in. The disqualified are thus kept out of all par- 

10. Keep a book; register every member of your society; 
keep out all pimps and spies; brawlers; would-be leaders, and 
meddling demagogues. 

Allow no speeches; appoint no committees; denounce all 
cabals and caucuses; and decide every current motion by a 


majority upon a viva voce vote, upon the call of the roll; 
and all elections by a plurality of ballots. Admit none but 
free white male citizens of lawful age ; and exclude from your 
meetings, and by law from voting, all paupers, atheists, fools, 
drunkards, gamblers, rioters, convicts, slavers, foreigners, de- 
faulters, embezzlers, and all those who will not honestly earn 
their own livings and pay their debts ; and punish with the 
pains and penalties of high treason, without reprieve or pardon, 
every one who shall be lawfully convicted of any kind of fraud 
in appointments to office, or at or about any election. This 
was an inflexible law of the Athenians, who most rigidly exe- 
cuted it. 

The eligibility of foreigners for office and for liberty to vote 
should be abolished. Its allowance was given from misdirected 
notions of liberality. It was an experiment ; no nation but 
the United States ever made the same step ; time and experi- 
ence have shown its impolicy. It has been most shamefully 
and corruptly abused by the worst men who at home were pro- 

Intelligent and respectable foreigners do not wish it ; and 
in every place where there has been a native party, its main 
strength and success have come from the votes of respectable 
foreigners, from an honest desire to keep bad men down. 

It is quite enough to open the door to all free native born of 
lawful age and fair character. It is very difficult to keep them in 
order. Honest and intelligent foreigners, who like the country 
and its institutions well enough to cast their children's destiny 
here, will be content without office or voting, with the guaran- 
tee of an American birthright for their new-born offspring. 

A board of lawful censors, consisting of twelve lawful voters, 
should be annually elected for each ward or election district, 
nine of whom should be a quorum, whose duty it should be to 
strike from the registry the name of every person not legally 
qualified, according to the foregoing restrictions. 

Give them a day for a hearing, and compel them to stand the 
challenge of any censor or any lawful voter of the district, and 
let the question be tried by evidence ex parte, if they do not 
appear. The Athenians made this a law also, and further, 
they ordained that all candidates for office should undergo a 
rigid examination by a competent board, as to their entire 
qualifications in all respects, and that any lawful voter should 
bo permitted to dispute their fitness and prove their charges 


by competent evidence. Not one in twenty of our officers 
elect could stand this just ordeal. 

These precautious are obviously just ; no intelligent, disin- 
terested man would object to them, and they apply with equal 
force to voters and candidates. 

When the delegations or conferees of the parties meet in 
convention to prepare for the election campaign, the first and 
most important part of their duty is to nominate the best men 
in their party for the offices to be elected. 

This should never be done at first by the convention; it 
opens a door to intrigue and corruption. A committee of five 
or nine of the oldest and best members should be raised to re- 
port at another meeting. 

This plan being adopted recently, a similar committee from 
another party conferred with them ; and the combined inde- 
pendence and impartiality of these two committees prepared 
for their respective parties tickets with candidates for both 
sides of which the community might well be proud. 

By this means mere politicians are passed by, and the appro- 
priate and necessary qualifications of the nominees have a 
chance to be fairly appreciated. 

It is said that the conference of these joint committees 
elevated the views and feelings of its members, and that they 
were able to suggest for each other names which, from party 
predilections, they had respectively overlooked; and thus the 
legitimate resources of choice were strengthened and purified. 

And in order that the arrogant and degrading abuses of 
parties and factions be forever broken up, there should be a 
nomination docket kept open in every election district for a 
given number of days before the election, in which should be 
recorded the nominations of any qualified voter, to be published 
in time ; to which the voting should be confined, irrespective 
of the vulgar, clamorous, and huxtering brutality of the leading 
parties, who may put down by scorn and violence any squad, 
nowever pure and patriotic, but who in this way cannot circum- 
vent the still and hidden under-current of the public will at 
the ballot-boxes. 

In the places where this salutary precaution prevails, in- 
stances have frequently occurred of the election of persons too 
elevated in moral worth and official ability to suit the venal 
purposes of the nominating cabals of the political factions, to 


their total discomfiture, and by whom the successful candidates 
and their constituents would have been bullied down and 
mobbed from the polls, if their banner had been publicly un- 

By these wise and just regulations, improper persons will be 
prevented from taking any part in the selection or voting for 
candidates; the whole business will fall into the hands of re- 
spectable men ; and an end will be effectually put to these 
most treasonable acts of political fraud and corruption. 

So much for political abuses, and the remedy therefor. 

The extinguishing of fires, and saving property from confla- 
gration in cities, mostly begin by the voluntary associations 
and exertions of respectable persons ; the idle, officious, and 
vicious fall into the ranks, take lead in the noise and excite- 
ment, crowd out the well-behaved and honestly disposed ; and 
finally the whole concern falls into the hands of boys, vaga- 
bonds, ruffians, and murderers, who ravage the property, pro- 
fane the peace, and maraud upon the lives of the people. 

These institutions should never be trusted to individual asso- 
ciations ; there is too much at stake in these matters for any- 
thing short of the most stringent control of the law. It is 
wonderful that the people of the United States have so long 
suffered this important department of their peace and security 
to remain in the hands of a fierce and irresponsible mob, who 
receive large bounties from the public treasury, and whose de- 
monstrations furnish so many instances of public agitation, in- 
efficiency, and riot. They exhibit any amount of bragging and 
bluster, with the least evidences of success. If a building is 
saved by a deluge of water, and the utter destruction of its 
contents, the welkin is sounded over the town, as if the per- 
formers in the terrific scene of racket and violence were heroes 
and public benefactors ; but if an explosion or a strong gale of 
wind intervenes, they are not then the persons found upon the 
house-tops, with outspread and saturated carpets and blankets, 
or with hooks and ladders, saving property and lives, and pros- 
trating intervening structures to arrest the devouring flames : 
humane and heroic struggles, when the pinch comes, are 
quietly made by the unpretending citizens, and the female and 
infant members of their households. 

Has any fire-company of boys and rabble ever invented any 
improvement in their machinery or apparatus, or in its use ; 


how to avert, or avoid, or pre-detect an explosion ? How to 
prepare building materials indestructible by fire? Or how to do 
anything but rave through the streets, mangle, fight, and mur- 
der, destroy and burn each other's engines and engine-houses ? 

The primary political movements and the elections are in- 
fluenced by these ruffians ; and it has come to pass that the 
people are afraid of them. 

In all times, their pernicious and dangerous tumults and fe- 
rocity have been deprecated. As early as the second century 
(A. J). 200), Pliny writes to the Emperor Trajan from the pro- 
vince of Bithynia, where he was governor, viz. : " A prodi- 
gious fire broke out at Nicomedia, which consumed several pri- 
vate houses : the town-house and the temple of Isis, though 
they stood on contrary sides of the street. You will consider, 
sir, whether it may not be advisable to institute a company of 
firemen, consisting only of one hundred and fifty members. I 
will take care, none but those of that business shall he admitted 
into it ; and that the privileges granted them shall not he ex- 
tended to any other purpose." To which the emperor replied, 
" You are of opinion it would be proper to constitute a com- 
pany of firemen in Nicomedia, agreeably to what has been 
practiced in several other cities. But it is to be remembered 
that these sort of societies have greatly disturbed the peace of 
that province in general, and of cities in particular ; whatever 
name we give them, and for whatever purpose they may be 
founded, they will not fail to form themselves into turbulent 
assemblies, however short their meetings may be. It will there- 
fore he safer to provide such machines and force as are of ser- 
vice in extinguishing fires by public order, and at the public 
expense, and to be managed by the public authority." — The 
Letters of Pliny, Book X, Letters 42 and 43. 

There are honorable and laudable exceptions; but it is seen by 
the experience of all ages that nothing but anarchy and vio- 
lence ever come from leaving anything to be done by an un- 
governed mob. The remedy is simple and effectual. 

Cities and towns should be divided off into districts, embrac- 
ing not more than four blocks, or eight hundred houses. In 
the centre of each district, there should be an engine and 
hose-house, with a bell, complete apparatus, and a chief, with a 
sufficient corps of able-bodied, efficient, disciplined, and enlisted 
men, raised and controlled by the law. 

This corps should be a fire-police, to patrol its district with 


a single eye for the prevention and prompt removal of combus- 
tions, neglected lights, and all the liabilities for fire ; and for 
their instant discovery and extinguishment. By these rigid 
and direct precautions, a fire would seldom get headway; but 
when it did break out, the chief and his corps should speedily 
go to it, and from experience, would know how to confine even 
an explosion to its own locality. 

If he required aid, a man, sent back to his station house, 
could tap the concerted signal for the corps from district No. 
2, 3, or all, as occasion requires. 

A cordon should be stationed round the required space, the 
whole proceeding, parties, lifters, carriers, property savers, 
buckets, plugs, engines, hose, and firemen, should all be under 
the immediate and absolute command of the chief of that dis- 
trict, and no one should be suffered to meddle or interfere but 
the men in service, nor one word uttered but by authority. 

There would then be no wanton destruction of property, no 
mobs, riots, alarm, terror, robbery, or murder. 

The demonstrations of brutality and boisterous outrage, now 
made by firemen, spring from, and find their sources in, the 
savage sympathies that wage and stimulate rapine and war. 
They have no honest object in view. They have no skill, ex- 
perience, or responsibility ; nothing to save or gain ; and form 
the worst elements of a reckless and ferocious mob. 

They are more remorseless and terrible than soldiers, for 
they claim to have the show of discipline, and the plausible 
formalities and sanction of law. 

By day or by night, a city, surrendered to the insurrectionary 
roar and maniac yells of a succession of conflicting and infu- 
riated blood-thirsty firemen, rushing in wild and thundering 
tumult, presents a scene of revolting and overwhelming horror, 
which can find no parallel. 

Lynching and mobs are odiously wrong, without any excuse 
or palliation; their authors are cowards and murderers; they 
make no publication of their wrongs, demand no redress, keep 
no records, have no leaders, they allow no treaties, capitula- 
tions, appeals, or surrender, but, like pirates and banditti, sink, 
kill, burn, scatter, skulk, and deny. 

The innocent have no chance to be heard, or time to escape, 
and the guilty find refuge and safety with treachery and 



If any one man makes himself obnoxious, let him be law- 
fully punished; but impute not his offence to others, because 
they live in the same street, or the same sort of house ; are of 
similar means, fortune, or persuasion. 

When an illumination was had, in Philadelphia, for Perry's 
victory, some houses were unlighted; the dark windows of a 
leading member of the Federal party were pointed out as a 
sullen mark of insult to the general triumph; but, upon in- 
quiry, it was found that the family were out of town, and that 
the house had been closed, day and night, for more than three 

Thus, it is seen how unjust imputations against a whole por- 
tion of society, or even a single individual, may be, upon mere 
inference and suspicion. 

The whole scope of popular conclusion and action against 
any man or anything, unsustainecl and unsupported by the 
legitimate and legal ascertainment of truth, is an inhuman and 
infamous outrage upon the civil compact, and should be prompt- 
ly and instantly treated as revolt and insurrection against the 
people, who have pledged themselves for the settlement of all 
lawful complaints by legal remedies. 

If a place of public amusement, or any of its managers or 
actors, becomes obnoxious, if it be lawful, those who do not like 
the place have no more right to prevent those who choose to 
go, from going, or to disturb or interrupt them, than those who 
do go have a right to force those to come who choose to stay 

The idea of such an interference by either would be as ab- 
surd as it is villainous and vulgar; no one but a scoundrel 
would pretend to sanction or justify such an outrage. 

If the objectionable object be a bawdy or gambling-house, 
do not burn or tear it down, even if there is no doubt of its 
being such. 

There never was any law, in any civilized country, that al- 
lowed any one to be convicted by popular acclamation, or that 
punished offences by mobs. 

Legal punishments are severe. The keepers and occupants 
of all such places can, by the laws of every State, be treated as 
vagrants, by imprisonment, aud their nuisances abated; their 
pursuits not being lawful; and vagrancy, meaning persons who 
pursue no lawful calling. 


These are shocking sores, which should be cauterized off of 
the surface of society. 

Gambling-houses engender all the worst and blackest crimes ; 
and these other sinks of abomination destroy health, poison 
the constitution, encourage idleness, thieving, and. debauchery, 
blunt the taste, and debase the morals of men, render them 
wholly unfit for decent society, and incapable of treating with 
becoming respect and delicacy chaste and respectable females. 
But there is no nuisance that should be abated by a mob. 

The public peace is a cardinal point of public responsibility, 
without which there is no security for life or property, nor any 
confidence or faith to be reposed in the guarantees of govern- 

Whenever the law and its ministers fail to protect their con- 
stituents, in their persons and property, the government becomes 
contemptible and odious. 

The difficulties in this respect would seem to come from some 
one of three causes: 1. An ignorance of the primary moral ele- 
ments which form the character, and stimulate the conduct, 
of the men to be governed; 2. An ignorance, sometimes it 
would seem almost wilful, of the precautionary and stringent 
nature of the means necessary and essential for an efficient go- 
vernment; and, 3. The cowardice, weakness, lack of courage, 
morbid and criminal sympathy, and truckling subserviency, by 
the functionaries of the law, in favor of those who are to be re- 
strained and governed. 

The natural cunning of man is sufficient to teach him that 
his chance of rapine lies in trick and fraud, rather than in open 

Hence the severest injuries to society are perpetrated under 
the simulations of lawful undertakings, such as corporations, 
monopolies, politics, &c. 

The instances of open piracy, robbery, and riots are rare. 
These outrages are secretly got up, and executed clamorously, 
and therefore, of course, the number and strength of the aggres- 
sors are always overrated. 

Mobs and riots produce great terror and alarm with smaller 
numbers and means of aggression than is supposed. _ They are 
composed of malefactors, desperate firemen, and politicians, gam- 
blers, thieves, and villains, who generally meet without concert, 
and act promptly upon excitement, and scatter. 


Their weapons arc clubs, dirks, knives, pistols, guns, and 
torches. They shoot, stab, burn, yell, and hide. 

They are a contemptible nuisance, and produce the most 
dreadful agitation and destruction of property and life. 

Their numbers, on any single occasion, rarely exceed one hun- 
dred persons. They soon attract notice and raise a tumult, but 
the real actors in these outrages are much fewer than is gene- 
rally supposed. 

At a town meeting held in September, 1850, in Philadelphia, 
by the citizens of all political parties, upon the proposition to 
consolidate that city and its districts, Judge Parsons stated 
that he had ascertained, by careful police and judicial inquiry, 
that the mobs and riots, with which that county had been so 
scandalously scourged for the preceding six or seven years, had 
at no time aggregated two hundred persons, and that one-half 
of these were boys. 

And even if their numbers are as great as is supposed, what 
comparison do they bear to the whole mass? 

Make an example of the city and county of Philadelphia. 
There were polled there in 1848, 21,508 Democratic votes; and 
31,229 Whig votes; together 52,737. This was far short of all 
the voters. Will any one be so bold as to assert that there ever 
was a mob in any city on the North American Continent whose 
real numbers, not the crowd, but the real rowdies in which, 
amounted to one tithe of either of these party votes? Cer- 
tainly not. 

A gentleman who resided on the south side of Christian Street, 
a few doors west of Third Street, in the district of Southwark, 
in the county of Philadelphia, sat with his family at his front 
windows, and saw the whole mob, in all its strength, that, in 
1844, attacked the Catholic church in Queen street, and con- 
vulsed the whole community with horror, which called out the 
sheriff, and a major-general, with a posse comitatus, and a 
division of the army of Pennsylvania, as if the city was under 
siege ; and the whole of this terrible mob made ambuscade of 
the angles of the squares, at the corner of Third and Christian 
Streets, preserved silence, and from an old unmounted rusty 
swivel dragged there by a rope, and thrown upon the ground, in 
the open street, they loaded and fired at the people, and their 
army only one square off in Queen Street, for hours, until a 
sharp shooter, by the flash of their gun, saw and brought down 


the only man amongst them, and then all the rest, some twelve 
or fifteen boys, ran away. 

The excitements were strong that produced these riots, and 
this may perhaps he considered, relatively, as a sample of all 
mobs; sometimes smaller, and at other times larger, but never 
disciplined, or half so difficult to overcome as is supposed. 

Covert and secret fraud, corporation monopolies, or broad 
and open violence and plunder, constitute the distinguishing 
features of depraved and licentious communities. 

They form another revolting and hideous fungus upon the 
body politic, and require another appropriate knife for their 
effectual extirpation. 

1. There should be no petty corporation board of health, poor 
guardians, district or county commissioners, port wardens, gas, 
water, or fire companies, of which there are, in some cities, fif- 
teen or twenty; these should all be placed under one general 
municipal head. And there should be no banks, insurance, 
railroad, or other joint stock monopolies; of which there are, in 
some cities, hundreds. All these should be open to individual 
enterprise and responsibility. Corporations are more careless, 
loose, secret, corrupt, and irresponsible than individuals. Al- 
most all of the embezzlements and frauds in the United States 
have come through incorporated institutions. 

Every magistrate, judge, and juror should be fifty years old; 
and the magistrates and judges, before entering upon the 
duties of their office, should be subjected to a close and rigid 
examination, by a board of experienced persons, as to their 
qualifications and moral fitness, and, if not approved, they 
should be rejected ; and no politician or factionist should ever 
be allowed to hold any office. 

2. All laws abolishing imprisonment for debt, and exempting 
goods from execution, should be repealed, and substituted by 
reasonable provision for the poor, to be furnished and supplied 
by the Guardians of the Poor out of the public funds; so that 
this allowance to them should not be forced upon their credit- 
ors, whereby assessments and taxations become unequal and 
oppressive. There should also be provision made for writs of 
execution, with a clause for levying on the defendant's proper- 
ty, if he has any ; and if not, with a clause for taking the de- 
fendant before the tribunal, issuing the writ requiring him 
there to show that he is honestly insolvent, and what he has 



done, at least, with that for which the plaintiff's deht was 
made j and in default to answer under an indictment for fraud. 

The earnings, habitations, and lives of honest men are in no 
more danger from the wolf than the rogue ; both are animated 
bj the same animo furanrfi. 

- The human aggressor being just so much worse than the 
brute as his turpitude is rational. 

It is said that some are so mentally deficient as to be unable 
to appreciate the distinctions between right and wrong. If this 
is found to be true, they should be perpetually shut up, and by 
appropriate employment compelled to support themselves. 

Some criminals plead idiocy, and others allege madness. 
The former should be carefully restrained, and treated with hu- 
manity and tenderness. But both should be narrowly watched, 
for crime is conclusive evidence of a depraved and wicked heart; 
if not so, why is it that fools and madmen are always doing had 
things ? 

Why is it that they have to be watched, to be kept from 
doing harm, and that they never do anything good? 

If a criminal is found really to be insane, and suffering under 
a permanent alienation of mind, and not a transient alienation 
for trick and fraud, snap the tight shirt over his arms, hook his 
legs to a rack, shave his head, and deplete his fury. 

But if he is a cheat, and dares to come to his reason, hang 
or shoot him, or bolt him up for life. He cannot be trusted. 

If the crime be venal, or the offender be stupid, ignorant, or 
reckless, whip or imprison for the first offence ; but if he be in- 
corrigible, or the crime aggravated, upon a second conviction, 
shoot or hang him, or shut him up for life, without reprieve or 

The wide world should be kept clear for the honest and in- 
dustrious. Give them a fair chance to work and earn the 
necessary means of supply and subsistence for themselves, 
and those who cannot and will not work. 

3. Upon conviction for fraud, battery, stealing, forgery, &c, 
the defendant should be sentenced to heavy imprisonment, and 
to pay the injured party his just damages; and for all personal 
violence to be publicly whipped. And why not? If he has 
beaten you, is it not fair that he should be beaten too ? Pecu- 
niary damages are rendered for pecuniary injuries and hurts to 
property and character; and why not corporeal punishments for 
corporeal inflictions? 


If the ruffians who maraud and riot knew that on conviction 
they were to he triced up and flogged with a cowhide, well laid 
on the bare back, about fifty or a hundred cuts, they would not 
be so expert and adroit to mob and knock down. To fine or 
imprison, or attempt to reform a skulking scoundrel who has 
cheated, robbed, and battered you, is a public invitation to 
every coward and bully to steal, burn, and kill. 

4. Abolish capital punishment, if there is a majority against 
taking life ; although it would seem to be absurd and mawkish 
to spare a wilful and open robber, house-burner, or murderer. 
But the safety of persons and property is a priceless jewel, 
which should not be desecrated or despoiled; therefore, upon a 
second conviction of every offence affecting the safety of either, 
without reprieve or pardon, shut them up for life. The first 
offence may have been from accident, ignorance, or excitement; 
but these excuses should not avail for a second perpetration. 
The public peace demands that such culprits should be held 
and treated as its incorrigible enemies. 

Every city, town, and county requiring protection from 
marauders, should have an experienced, prudent, and resolute 
military officer, to be called 


with power to keep equipped and disciplined for active or con- 
tingent service, an efficient military force, to patrol singly or by 
squads, in disguise or in column, by day and night, all high- 
ways, public places, and other localities ; disperse unlawful or 
suspicious gatherings; silence clamors ; subdue turbulence and 
riot, and arrest all disturbers of the peace and violators of the 
law, and deliver them over to the civil authorities. And as 
exigencies may require to invest and scour all places, and with 
or without warning, as the emergency may demand, scatter, cut, 
and shoot down all mobs and riots by muskets, cannon, or dra- 

Police officers are generally weak and timid ; they may serve 
civil process, or commit persons after they are arrested and 
secured ; unarmed and singly, they never have been able to 
stand against, much less overcome, a mob, with bricks, stones, 
and firearms. Their employment, or the requisition of soldiers, 
without a leader, discipline, and permission to charge and fire 
upon such savage and lawless opposition, is a farce. Nothing- 
will put down violence and insurrection but prompt military 


attack, pursuit, and death ; and nothing but military authority 
and discipline will defeat the bribery and corruption of a mere 
civil police by criminals. 

If there had been a "Peace Marshal," with one hundred 
infantry, artillery, and dragoons each, in Kensington, on the 
day that St. Michael's church and the market houses were 
burned, he would have ordered a clearing of the streets, placed 
the whole district under strict military guard, and there would 
have been no riot, mob, conflagration, or murder. 

The same course would have been adopted the next day, 
before noon, round St. Augustine's church. A similar pro- 
ceeding would have been taken a day sooner in Southwark. 
A like measure would have been employed early on the day of 
the Astor Place riot, in New York ; and the result would 
have been that the stores and dwellings of these locations 
would have been closed for a few hours or days ; but no lives 
would have been sacrificed, no arsons perpetrated, and no 
encouragement would have been given for future rapine and 

The sacrifice of property and life, and the humiliating con- 
cessions of the impotence and indisposition of authorities for 
public constraint, by these awful and degrading catastrophes, 
are a blot on the country, which can never be wiped away. 
Ages must pass before their encouraging and stimulating influ- 
ences will cease to excite and prick forward the outlaw and the 

The value of the conflagrated property would have paid an 
armed police for either city for fifty years ; and the shooting 
down of ten thousand murdering ruffians, much less the fine 
and imprisonment of half a dozen, could not atone for the loss 
of one innocent life. 

At any cost — even if it be by the instant destruction of every 
rioter, as if he were a ferocious wild beast — the public peace, the 
persons, property, and lives of society should be sacredly pre- 
served and protected ; and all violence and rapine, the instant 
it rears its hydra head, should be crushed for ever into the 
earth, without delay, compunction, compassion, or remorse. 



Delusion — Cabals — Factions — Examples — Venality — Primary meetings — 
Printers — Politicians' ignorance — House of Representatives in 1849 — 
Benton and Foote, in the Senate — Primary meetings — Elections — Good 
men deterred, &c. — Extracts. 

Political pursuits have fascinated, misled, and ruined 

Amor patriae is the ostensible beginning of this captivating 
occupation ; but it is soon lost amidst the mazes of faction. 

The genuine spirit of patriotism is swallowed up in the ex- 
citements of party strife, and gives way to passion for victory. 

These factions are led and ruled by hungry cormorants for 
spoils and plunder; and the loyal rank and file expend their 
time and money, and expose their health, characters, and lives, 
through all the boisterous violence, intrigue, and corruptions 
of successive campaigns, to witness the translation of their 
artful leaders into places of profit and power. This is the 
only harvest ever cut by the political reapers. 

In front of this cordon of orators, torch-lights, and revolu- 
tion, are found the indomitable and imperturbable candidates 
for office. 

It is said of this heroic band, that no one of them was ever 
known to fight or sweat from heat, to shiver from cold, blush 
from shame, or look you in the eye. 

They are impervious to heat, cold, insult, and shame. 

The predominating trait in their character is a persevering, 
unflinching pursuit and cringing cowardice for ofiice ; they 
never despair, but scent up, and howl out for prey, like hun- 
gry wolves, till flesh is cast between their greedy jaws. Their 
tergiversation, treachery, and total disregard of all faith put them 
upon the footing of common blacklegs ; and most of them are 
covertly or openly professed and practical gamblers. 

They will spin yarn, weave tape, bribe, swear falsely, forge 
election returns, and buy and sell votes and offices ; give 

382 politics. 

pledges to all sides, and for any purpose ; swear to keep their 
promises, and afterwards repudiate them. 


"They who enter into a faction do not properly reason 
weakly ; but desert reason altogether, as one does who leaves 
his own to go into another country, whereof the laws, customs, 
and language are different. The design and centre of faction 
is to drive on such a project, and adhere to those who prose- 
cute it. And therefore nothing must be allowed or argued but 
with respect to these. Hence it is, that in vain you reason 
with them ; for one may transubstantiate as soon as convert 
them ; all that their friends say is unanswerable, and they con- 
temn and scorn what is said by their adversaries when they 
cannot answer it ; there is no crime they dare not commit, for 
the guilt seems but small when divided amongst so many 
bearers; they warm themselves, by clubbing into a kind of 
belief, and they vote themselves into a shadow of infallibility ; 
whilst they cry out against others as slaves to the government, 
they become really slaves to the faction, their liveries and 
chains being seen by all except themselves. But the great 
salary with which their bondage is to be rewarded is applause 
from their friends, or it may be the mob, to whom naturally 
their appeal lies; and the getting into the government, where 
they will be abhorred for practicing everything they formerly 
decried, and so have that reputation for which they toiled, 
blasted by their own old arguments." — Sir George Mack- 
enzie, Essay on Reason, p. 441. 

At every important election in the United States, all these 
crimes are openly and publicly perpetrated, and never prose- 

At every legislative session, bribery and corruption stalk at 
noonday. Presidents, governors, senators, and members log- 
roll, are dined, supped, complimented with watches, and pre- 
tended presents, and loans by each other and by candidates ; 
and participate in the most degrading reciprocations of syco- 
phantic servility, intrigue, and fraud. 

No measure can be carried without in-door and out-door 
secret and sordid stimulations. Members are hired and paid 
like brokers, to bargain and intrigue for the passage and defeat 
of laws. The respectable members are always in the minority; 

politics. 383 

they have no influence ; and their speeches and protests are 
rudely and brutally gagged down. 

High-minded men have resigned, and refused to re-serve, 
from disgust at these revolting scenes of iniquity and treason. 
Indeed, no gentleman of purity and independence can demean 
himself by feasting and social interchanges with gamesters, 
drunkards, defaulters, embezzlers, and political vagabonds, as 
is practiced at the seats of legislation ; and those who make 
pretensions of respectability, and from sinister motives secretly 
participate in these humiliations, are sordid hypocrites. 

Committees have repeatedly reported these abuses. No in- 
stance has occurred of a legislative or judicial prosecution, out 
of the numerous flagrant instances of uncontradicted corrup- 
tion and villainy, which have been reported. On the contrary, 
they laugh off the most infamous perpetration ; make a joke of 
ostensible reasons ; and conceal the sinister and secret motives 
for all legislative action. 

Curious instances of infatuation and treachery occur with 
politicians, that find no parallel in the other spheres of life, 
not even amongst thieves. 

An accomplished and faithful deputy, upon the death of his 
principal, applied for the vacant post ; obtained honorable in- 
troduction, and abundant recommendations to the nominating 
power; and amongst these documents he found one of them 
sealed. This was from a pretended patron, high in office. His 
restless curiosity and strong suspicions forced out from its en- 
velope the missile of treacherous duplicity; he found an un- 
sheathed poniard to his hopes. 

" Sir — The bearer is an aspirant for the office of ; 

he has desired me to recommend him ; and of course I have 
said I would. A more presumptuous or impertinent solicita- 
tion was never made. He must not be appointed ; nor must 
he know why." 

Upon the success of a party candidate for governor, some 
years since, a certain clique was supposed to have control over 
the appointing power. An eager aspirant for an inspectorship, 
worth some five thousand dollars per annum, obtained the re- 
quired recommendations, and handed them to one of these 
distinguished and trusty leaders, who, by pretended arrange- 
ment, was to obtain the commission. Disappointment followed; 
another got the office. 

384 politics. 

This failure seemed mysterious ; the leader was pressed and 
pushed for explanation ; he expressed apparent displeasure at the 
governor, and charged him with direct infidelity. The defeated 
inspector writhed in doubt. Some months afterwards, he ob- 
tained a private interview with the governor, and requested to 
know the reason for this oversight. The governor did not 
comprehend, and invited him to make a free and frank disclo- 
sure. This request was fully complied with ; and the go- 
vernor's reply was, a total ignorance of the whole affair. 
" Well, sir," said the applicant, " now it is too late ; but pray, 
sir, there was time then ; why not intimate to my friend that 
there was not enough, or hand him back my packet ? You did 
not return it ; nor did you answer my friend." " What do 
you mean, sir ? Who was your friend ?" " It was Mr. 

." " Well, go to him, and tell him he never gave me 

your letter, nor mentioned your name to me." 

The parting was mutually abrupt. The leader was sought, 
arraigned, accused, reproached, and in silence quietly bore the 
storm. " Why don't you speak ? What can you say ? Is it 
so that you did not give him the letters ? Is it true that you 
did not mention my name ? Say, sir, what did you do with 
my packet? where is it? Will you speak?" ''Well, when 
you will let me, I will speak. You certainly were not such a 
fool as to suppose we were in earnest? Your bundle was 

burned !" " Burned ! why there was " " Oh, yes; I know 

that; I took that out before I burned it. I found several 
others in the same way ; your bonus was pitifully small ; you 
ought to be ashamed of such meanness." " You villain ! you 
infernal thief!" said the assailant; u give me my hundred dol- 
lars ! give it back, or I'll prosecute you for stealing !" " Very 
well ; then I'll indict you for an attempt at bribery." " I'll 
sue you for the money. I will assign the claim, and swear I 
lent you the hundred dollars." " You can't do it." " Yes, I 
can ; there is Steel and the Phoenix Insurance Company, that 
ruled that a party may sell his claim, and be a witness ; you 
seem as cold and indifferent as a rock." " Yes, and I in- 
tend to remain so ; do your best, my lad ! Steel and the In- 
surance Company was overruled by Patterson against Keed ! 
Ha!! ha!! ha!! ha!!" 

The primary meetings of all politicians are scenes of fraud, 
corruption, and violence. A discontented faction of a party 
decided upon a certain set of men for delegates; and their re- 

politics. 385 

turn to the general conference, is forced up by party minions, 
without regard to suffrage. 

Five ward delegates, elected by eighty-seven ballots against 
three, were returned upon the authority of nineteen affidavits. 
The minority, this three, over their grog at the bar down stairs, 
impudently forged a ward meeting report, by which they re- 
turned themselves and two others as the delegates ; and this 
last set were received, while the true and real delegates were 
rejected by the general ward delegation. 

The Democratic party was thus deprived of its legitimate nomi- 
nation for a governor ; its strength was divided and scattered j 
and the power of the State was thrown into the hands of a cor- 
rupt and irresponsible faction, who sold its honor and purity to 
a vile and rotten corporation. 

The extravagance, peculation, and corruptions which follow- 
ed involved that State in debts and moral defalcations which 
ages cannot remove. 

The compacts and bargains of politicians are distinguished 
for the largest pretensions of public good, and the most hollow 
deceptions and treachery. Being inherently bent on mischief, 
and radically deficient in all the impulses which influence honest 
men, their associations are formed for the sinister purpose of 
deceiving the public, and defrauding each other. 

They never combine, if they can act separately. No politi- 
cion ever holds confidential communication with an equal, or a 
superior, or with his menials and puppets, except so far as is 
necessary to accommodate and promote his own interest. 

He is exclusively sinister, selfish, and sordid; he has -no 
mercy, compunctions, or remorse; and never foregoes an opin- 
ion or prejudice which concerns his own advantage, however 
he may profess to do so. 

He has the cunning of the pickpocket, the effrontery of the 
footpad, the cowardice of the assassin, and the cold-blooded de- 
pravity of the conventional marauder. 

His secret selfish spirit is exhibited on every emergency. 
From interest -and policy, he will affect to relax the severity of 
his resolutions ; but, unless the advantage overbalances the 
force of his passions, even while he reaps the harvest of a com- 
promise, he will betray his dogged obstinacy. 

This hidden subtilty is found with brutes and reptiles, and 
strongly indexes the surprising feeling of self, which occupies 

386 politics. 

the heart, and predominates over the secret impulses of every 
living thing which preys upon society. 

A singular instance of this dark and lurking propensity is 
exposed by Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, in his message to the 
French Assembly, on the 31st day of October, 1849, announc- 
ing the dismissal of his cabinet. 

He had selected his ministers from the conflicting factions, 
and they had solemnly promised to compromise their opinions, 
and maintain a cordial spirit of mutual confidence for one great 

He animated this resolution by personal kindness and con- 
cession for nearly a year; but found that his efforts for concilia- 
tion were taken for weakness; and, instead of producing a fusion 
of different shades of opinion, he had only neutralized open 
force; and that, so soon as they had obtained power, rivalries 
were renewed, and the country was secretly agitated with dis- 
order and anarchy. 

There would seem to be no means of approaching, much less 
reforming, these selfish passions of the politician; and where* 
they are compromised for purposes of mutual cupidity, let the 
result be biter or bitten, by the parties, they deserve no better 
sympathies than that induced by the fable of the thief and the 

The thief was implored to strip, and descend to the bottom 
of a deep well, for a silver pitcher, which the weeping child had 
casually dropped into the well; and while the thief was engaged 
in the secret effort to steal the pitcher, which was not there, the 
boy ran off with his clothes. 

In this connection, it should not be slurred that much pub- 
lic abuse is practiced by that class of politicians who are en- 
gaged in the publication of party newspapers. These artful and 
pretended vehicles of important information and instruction 
for the farmers, and the quiet and industrious portions of so- 
ciety, are got up by factions, who select a practical printer, 
generally ignorant and needy, who becomes a willing slave to 
his masters, and soon exhibits presumptuous demonstrations of 

The country has been scourged with these impudent and vul- 
gar cormorants. They wander about from place to place, with 
no motive but sordid gain, and claim, for their vagrant origin 
and vagabond vocations, the merit of pious emulation. 

They affect an intimate knowledge of all science and learning, 

politics. 387 

without any education except the mechanical acquirements of 
a printing room. They call Franklin their father, and demand 
from all men his paternal heritage; omitting to take the rebuke 
found for them in the fact that, of the thousands of printers in 
this century who have been colonels, generals, Congressmen, 
and senators, there has not emitted from their combined genius 
the ten thousandth particle of intellect that beamed from one 
silken hair of that great man's head. 

Who of these political printers ever wrote a valuable essay 
or book, made a discovery or invention in arts, sciences, me- 
chanics, or agriculture ? or contributed in any way to the morals, 
honor, or happiness of the people ? 

There is no instance in which they have as politicians re- 
flected credit upon, or increased the character of, their country. 

Those of them who have obtained offices of power have gene- 
rally proved themselves incompetent. 

Some of them by intrigue, but few by merit, have reached 
the House of Representatives, and some two or three of them 
have obtained seats in the Senate; where they have displayed 
gold snuff-boxes, large finger-rings, and jewelry; had them- 
selves puffed and paragraphed in the faction newspapers ; floated 
about at the hotels; and, occasionally, talked large and impu- 
dent in debate. But no one of them has ever shown learning, 
research, industry, or mental power. 

No political printer in the United States, since l^e days of 
Franklin, ever composed or wrote down a bright original 
thought, or made an eloquent or logical speech. They clamor, 
and scold, and abuse; but their affectations of learning and in- 
tellect are empty and ephemeral, and upon a par with their 
kite-catching vocation. 

A wide sphere for deception and fraud is afforded in the free 
and popular character of the public institutions of the United 
States. There is too great a disposition to encourage and re- 
ward party champions; and these are immense incitements and 
temptations for the ambitious and giddy, lying in the whole 
range of the primary meetings of the people, up to the conven- 
tions of the nation; and from the office of the secretary of a 
junto up to the Presidency of the United States. 

The leisure and gleanings of office, which are twice as nume- 
rous as necessary, eclipse the wages and seclusion of labor; 
and the infatuations of station and power captivate the idle, the 
vain, and the extravagant. Under these influences, thousands 

388 politics. 

crowd into public arenas; make loud and zealous professions of 
patriotism ; and reform, get up, and complete the political move- 
ments and elections, and then scramble like hungry wolves for 
the spoils. 

The public good with them is but a secondary consideration ; 
everything is made subsidiary to their grasp for plunder, and 
the security for their continuance in power. 

A singular instance of the destructive effects produced by this 
step-stone of infatuation is but the history of countless office- 

A well-educated, industrious, and successful lawyer, under 
the false and fatal delusion that his business would increase by 
political popularity, permitted himself to be elected to Congress, 
lost all his practice, contracted a passion for office, and humili- 
ated himself in pursuit of a foreign embassy — a territorial, exe- 
cutive or judicial station, a consulate, an Indian agency, a tide- 
waiter, anything; was disappointed, discouraged, took to drink, 
and died a beggar ! 

Another instance occurred of a respectable young lawyer, who 
embarked into politics under the delusive expectation also that 
it would bring him business. 

It was not long before his eloquence and address obtained the 
admiration and applause of his own party, and of course the 
jealousy and hatred of his adversaries. 

He wa^ tendered flattering nominations and appointments, 
but declined them as foreign to his scheme for patronage. A 
rupture occurred in his party, with the majority of which he 
remained; he reproved the revolting faction with scorching sever- 
ity, and soon came to be a popular and formidable demagogue; 
and just as he was essential for the triumph of his own side, he 
became obnoxious to the others; they were stung to the quick 
by his ready wit, keen sarcasm, and surprising powers of vindi- 
cation and assault. 

He was persecuted and publicly insulted, and finally in the 
night was mobbed and beaten, first by the faction from his own 
party, and afterwards by the opposite party. At last his eyes 
were opened, the delusion vanished, and he saw the career of 
madness and infatuation in which he had been groping. 

He saw that men of true respectability did not respect those 
who take an active part in politics; that not more than one-half 
of them vote on either side ; and if they do vote, it is for the 
few decent men on both tickets indifferently — if there happen 

politics. 889 

to be any such on the tickets, which is very rare; that when 
they have real occasion for the services of lawyers, they employ 
those whose entire time and qualifications can be obtained. 

That almost all party leaders are lazy and dissolute ; that they 
have no decent business for a lawyer, and no money to pay for 
it; that they subsist by dishonest means, and prematurely perish 
as paupers or malefactors; and that a lawyer has no right to 
expect the countenance or patronage of respectable business 
men, however well qualified and industrious he may be, when 
his office is occupied by idlers with their hats on, and their feet 
on his table, smoking cigars, engaged in loud and vulgar con- 
versation ; and that to obtain and hold the confidence of the 
respectable part of the community, he must devote his whole 
time and attention to his studies and his business, keep no bad 
company, and utterly reject all the allurements of office and 
judicial patronage, and maintain towards the court a respectful 
but resolute course of independence. 

That a thorough education, clear head, and industry are es- 
sential to the arduous duties of a lawyer. 

These solemn sober second thoughts wakened up his slum- 
bering and bewildered reason, and he discovered that his mind, 
talents, and time had been used for the brutal gratifications of 
vulgar vagabonds ; and thereafter he abstained from their de- 
basing amalgamations. 

That same year his practice increased more than fifty per 
cent., and he sustained through a long life a character distin- 
guished for acknowledged worth and integrity. When, in later 
days, he warned his faithfully and well-trained sons against 
these deceitful currents and dangerous quicksands, he dis- 
covered that he had hearers like he who had thirty years 
before listened to the wisdom and solid experience of his own 
father. Here was an instance in which there was mental and 
moral energy enough left to shake loose from political infatua- 
tion ; but the instances are rare in which this can be done. 

With the indolent and licentious, politics is a mania ; and 
even with educated and respectable persons it is sometimes un- 
governable. Persons engaged in these pursuits contract an 
utter repugnance to all the occupations of labor, and loaf about, 
and soon sink away into total degradation. Honorable and 
lucrative pursuits are frequently abandoned for uncertain 
chances of insignificant appointments : and members of State 
Legislatures and of Congress have almost exclusively employed 



their official term for the express purpose of obtaining some 
other post. 

If a measure of aid, relief, or supply comes in from the ex- 
ecutive or the departments, a rush is made for its support, and 
in and out of doors there is a degrading servility to the sources 
of patronage. 

The competition, embezzlements, and oppressions of a very 
large number of those who have held authority in this coun- 
try, " the insolence of office, the law's delay," demonstrate the 
same morbid depravity and treason to the people everywhere 
exposed in all ages, and conclusively establish the terrible and 
alarming truth that the free institutions of the United States 
would have long since been subverted and forgotten, but for the 
wholesome, effectual, and triumphant revolution wrought out 
by the people at every election ; and that, although the advo- 
cates of free governments do not attribute to these institutions 
the power to reclaim those bent on mischief, yet that the pow- 
erful and recuperative tendencies of republican institutions so 
enlighten and qualify the well disposed for self-government, 
that they can keep themselves extricated from the frauds and 
oppressions of the wicked and despotic, when they choose to 
exert their power. 

Appointments are not made from the best men, irrespective 
of party, and for the general good ; nor from the best men of 
the dominant party; but from the best party men — those who 
are the most thorough and exclusive in their party resolutions; 
and this rule applies to their present and most suitable adapta- 
tion to the secret purposes of party intrigue, without the least 
regard to any other consideration. Whether they have been 
consistent party men, or have been over and over apostates, 
spies, and traitors — have recently come in, or never have been 
in the party — is wholly immaterial, if then, at the pinching 
time for cement and security, they can be relied upon for secret 
faith and certain execution. 

Mr. Polk was not selected for President and run in by his 
party for any great or extraordinary public act he ever per- 
formed, or any pretended capacity he had for doing great 
things, but solely because the tricksters behind the scenes 
knew that, by reason of his rigorous fidelity and address in 
executing the secret caucus measures of his party while Speaker 
of the House of Representatives, he was to be safely depended 
on for party emergencies. 


In this they did not fail, for no man ever served a faction 
with faith and loyalty more true. 

What other President dared to repeat three times, and rude- 
ly press back, rejected nominations of miscreant factionists, or 
wink at the corruption and peculation of political favorites ? 

It is a private sordid purpose, and not the general good that 
governs in all these party movements. 

The most competent and efficient, with unanimous nomina- 
tion by their own party, endorsed by thousands, will be thrust 
aside for one only known as a politician in the opposite ranks, 
and as a sly associate of knaves and cheats, a covetous Shylock, 
in all the relations of trust and honor — a bankrupt to ruined 
corporations, and a Croesus to his private coffers — if his venal 
character will but suit the purposes of fraud and power. 

From the highest to the lowest, in every age, and with every 
faction, and with all political parties, these have been the cor- 
rupt and cardinal rules of secret action, and they are as much 
distinguished for their ignorance and lack of sagacity as for 
their reckless depravity. 

At the meeting of the United States House of Representa- 
tives in December, 1849, one party had nearly one hundred 
votes, and the other polled upwards of one hundred votes for 
the office of Speaker. Some ten votes were required by one 
party, and twenty or thirty votes for the other party, to make 
a majority; more than this number scattered off and played 
shy. The parties soon arrayed themselves against each other, 
and each demanded from the other the nomination of new 

If the democrats had succeeded, they would have held the 
legislative control, and baffled the President for at least two 
years. The other party had the same chance, with its execu- 
tive power and patronage superadded ; and yet both parties 
were too stupid, or dumb, or ignorant, to see, what every man of 
sagacity at a glance did see, that it is almost impracticable to 
prevail upon a faction to relinquish its purposes, to give up an 
opinion, or to listen to truth or persuasion ; that these are 
matters which a faction does not understand or think it has 
any concern with; that movements of this radical character can 
never be accomplished by the yielding of one side, if the influ- 
ences are equal on both sides, and neither possesses or has 
power to employ alchemical fusions; and also that in all 
squads there are a plenty who are in the market at any price. 

392 politics. 

These obvious and almost tangible propositions appear to have 
been wholly uncomprehended ; and thus for weeks they wasted 
their strength, and exposed their donkeyism ; while tens upon 
tens of members on both sides were anxiously waiting, and 
eagerly watching for sops, promises, and rewards to flunk or 
scatter. Out upon the ignorance and stupidity of politicians ! 
Quacks and conjurors, Brandreth and Roback have bigger 
bumps for trick and skill than they. 

When General Jackson visited Boston, and Mr. Fillmore 
succeeded President Taylor, they had the degree of LL.D. 
conferred upon them, from motives which could not have been 
excited for them out of the presidential chair. 

General Jackson was a brave soldier and a pure patriot, and 
Mr. Fillmore was honest and industrious, and an enterprising 

They did not either of them devote their minority to study, 
nor to any more reading than was required for the loose and 
superficial rules of admission and practice before the back- 
woods' squires and country courts. 

They made no pretensions to a collegiate, much less a 
finished, education; to discoveries in science; to a knowledge of, 
or the authorship of, choice works; or even to an acquaintance 
with the languages, without which no intimate or familiar 
knowledge can be acquired of the profound research and mental 
acquirements of the scholars of former or modern times. 

An excuse for the former was given, by reference to his 
letter of rebuke to the nullifiers; but Mr. Edward Livingston 
was known to be the author. 

No one but a finished, profound, and thoroughly disciplined 
and experienced scholar could have devised and composed that 
masterly State paper. 

Cambridge and Geneva would not have conferred this degree 
on these gentlemen if they had not been Presidents of the 
United States; and the objects of this servile ostentation ought 
to have refused to accept them. 

Thousands of the bright and illustrious scholars of America 
were thus passed by and slighted, and their deep learning and 
profound erudition slurred to accommodate the miserable vanity 
of cringing demagogues. 

Boards of trustees and faculties, in the arts and sciences, 
desecrate this pure token of glorious fame, chastely and deli- 
cately designed as a just and humble reward to human wisdom 

politics. 393 

and exalted genius, when they confer it upon men who have 
never taken any previous degrees in the forums of learning, 
and whose only pretension to distinction is a transient and acci- 
dental translation from obscurity to power. 

And it is difficult for an intelligent, impartial, and disinte- 
rested lover of truth and justice to distinguish between the 
amount of odium and scorn which thus inevitably enures to 
the giver and the receiver both. 

A negro slave, by a warrant, in the custody of the United 
States Marshal, before a United States judge, in Boston, is 
rescued by a casual mob of twenty or thirty negroes. 

The President of the United States issues his proclamation, 
announcing, in terms of indignation and amazement, this in- 
surrectionary effort to dismember the Union ; and invokes the 
patriotism of the people of Boston, and the whole country, to 
bring the culprits to condign punishment. 

The Senate of the United States wakes up in terror and 
dismay, with a fierce and peremptory demand from the Presi- 
dent for an official explanation of this terrific eruption ; who 
presently reports, by executive message, half an hour long, re- 
citing his proclamation horrors, and all the laws giving him 
command-in-chief of the army and navy of the nation in cases 
of insurrection ; and deploring the want of a sword of a suffi- 
cient curve to reach this critical refinement in treason ; and de- 
manding more plenary and pungent capacities for the action of 
the commander-in-chief. 

Who but a new-fledged, vaporing demagogue would have 
made this impudent pretext for popular and vapid display? 

What had the President to do but quietly give orders to the 
proper department instantly to dismiss that marshal, and ap- 
point a proper man ? — no cringing, cowardly politician, but a 
true and proper man, with energy and courage enough to detail 
and arm five hundred or five thousand deputy marshals, and 
promptly execute the process of the court, and send his bill of 
the cost of it to the government to be paid. 

There was no army, navy, or commander-in-chief, or Presi- 
dent, or Senate, or proclamation, or message required ; and this 
vapid and gasconading promulgation was an ignorant and pre- 
sumptuous perversion of the national dignity and honor for 
ostentatious display. 

No other President of the United States would have thus 
degraded the high functions of office for political popularity. 

394 politics. 

And this insolent liberty with executive duty would not have 
been perpetrated by Mr. Fillmore, if he had been within a 
term, after the expiration of which he had no chance of a re- 

In the Senate of the United States, April 17, 1850, " Mr. 
Foote was proceeding with some sarcastic and pungent remarks, 
evidently in allusion to Mr. Benton, but had said nothing suffi- 
ciently open and offensive to justify the chair in calling him to 
order, when Mr. Benton rose, much agitated, and throwing his 
chair from him, proceeded by the narrow passage outside the 
bar towards Mr. Foote's seat, which is on the outside row of 
seats, near the main entrance to the Senate. 

" Mr. Dodge, of Iowa, and Mr. Dodge, of Wisconsin, appre- 
hending a collision between Mr. Benton and Mr. Foote, endea- 
vored to detain the former from moving from his seat. Over- 
coming all resistance, he continued towards Mr. Foote, who, 
leaving his place, stepped down the main aisle, and took a po- 
sition in the area, just in front of the sergeant-at-arms' seat, 
at the right of the Vice-President, at the same time drawing 
a pistol from his bosom, and cocking it. 

" The scene which ensued is indescribable. 

" Loud calls for the sergeant-at-arms were made, and cries of 
order ! resounded from all sides of the chamber. 

" Many persons rushed from the galleries and out of the 
chamber, in apprehension of a general meldc. 

" Several senators surrounded Mr. Foote, among whom was 
Mr. Dickinson, who, securing the pistol, locked it up in his 

This scene would never have been enacted by men under the 
influence of any of the ordinary excitements of our nature. 

It was produced by extraordinary and savage impulses. 
War and piracy seem to be pricked on by the same irritations 
which madden and beat up the savage propensities of gamblers, 
fanatics, and politicians. 

They have no respect for others, and recognize nothing as 
sacred, venerable, or dignified. 

If Mr. Foote, before he put the pistol in his pocket, was 
convinced that Mr. Benton would stab or shoot him the instant 
he entered the Senate chamber, he had no right to take the 
pistol to defend himself with. Such a defence must result in 
a fight which, under no provocation, he had a right to partici- 
pate in there, or it would end in the death of Mr. Benton, 

politics. 395 

which would have degraded the country just as much as if Mr. 
Benton had murdered Mr. Foote. 

The omission presently to expel them both, and the appoint- 
ment of a committee to ascertain and report facts which were 
all disclosed to the notice, and which occurred within the per- 
sonal view of the Senate, and the sham report of the commit- 
tee, were an insult to the people, and betrayed the censurable 
sympathy of senators for insubordination, and the selfish and 
private propensity they have to construe these indignities to 
the nation as their own personal affairs, and over which they 
have compromising supervision ; that is to say, to put them- 
selves in the place of the people, to make themselves superior 
to the country, and insolently trifle with the majesty of the 
Constitution and laws of their masters and sovereigns. 

If it had been regarded as necessary or formal to have the 
facts placed on the records, this could have been done by one 
line thrown into the body of the resolution for expulsion, to wit : 
"That Benton approached Foote in a menacing manner, where- 
upon Foote drew and cocked hispistol athim." This was enough, 
and no rest, no debate, no adjournment, should have been suffered 
until their expulsion had been voted, and the sergeant-at-arms 
had vindicated the insulted and desecrated honor of the nation 
by casting them from the chamber. 

It is the place and the occasion, and not the persons, or the 
lives of individual senators, which are to be first considered. 

Mr. Foote mistook his position, his duty, and the represent- 
ative relation in which he stood. His country, its honor and 
dignity, should have been first in his mind, and he was recreant 
and selfish to postpone or compromise those elevated inspira- 
tions for the indulgence of his temper. His pride and his life 
were of no value compared to his glorious functions as a sove- 
reign senator; and he was imbecile and groveling to over-think 
them for himself or his life for an instant. 

A servant of the people has no right to neglect or desert his 
duty for his private affairs, for quarrels or duels ; if he finds 
that he has not sufficient fidelity, honor, and self-control to 
engross his whole time and service for his country, he should 

Non-resistance may be a duty and a virtue in the council 
and in the field both, as much as the most desperate and heroic 
fighting would be a virtue and a duty in the hour of battle. 

396 politics. 

Soldiers are sometimes commanded to stand still in solid 
column for hours, in the face of a galling and destructive fire. 

It may be essential for a manoeuvre upon the success of 
which the fate of a nation depends. If a division under orders 
to take post and receive the enemy's fire should retaliate, the 
enemy might change his front or shift his position, when, if 
either of them had been retained a moment longer, a counter- 
movement, under the eye of a skillful general, might have 
secured his total defeat. 

This severe exposure, by which thousands of lives have per- 
ished, is not less trying to the courage than the resolute exercise 
of unflinching self-denial and self-government, amidst rudeness, 
abuse, persecution, and violence in the foreroom, patient en- 
durance and unwavering submission in both of these terrific 
emergencies are absolutely required for success and victory. 

The cases are entirely analogous, the duty for both occasions 
prescribed by the dictates of reason, and all civil and military 
tactics is that the soldier and the senator shall implicitly obey 
the orders, and maintain the honor and dignity, of his country, 
utterly regardless of life or limb. 

And there is just as much reason why a recreant member of 
any legislative body should be instantly and without trial struck 
down dead by the sergeant-at-arms, as there is for inflicting 
this summary punishment upon a revolting soldier in the heat 
of battle. 

They are both aware of their duty beforehand. If they do 
not think they will have courage to meet the dangers which 
they know they will be exposed to, they should stay away ; 
or if, after they have assumed the duty and tested the ordeal 
upon their tempers and cowardice, they discover lack of nerve 
or moral courage, they should back out, beg off, resign, or 

But let them not dare to grasp for or revel in the spoils of 
place and power, amidst the secret and skulking subterfuge of 
treachery and treason. 

And it is mean in them to attempt to crawl out of the re- 
sponsibility of these violations of duty by the whining and 
cowardly excuse that they have acted from impulse and in self- 

_ Legislative brawls are generally preceded by threats ; the par- 
ties are bullies, and require time and patting up for fight. 

Mr. Benton and Mr. Foote had understood each other some 

politics. 397 

days before, and General Foote admitted that he had put the 
pistol into his pocket for General Benton. 

It was not a sudden blow in a gust of anger; and if it had 
been so, that, like intoxication, does not excuse, but aggravates 

There is no man of ordinary intelligence who does not know 
in his own heart whether he can or cannot govern his temper; 
if he distrusts his firmness, he should not assume the uncertain 
management of vacillating and unsafe impulses; he should stay 
at home ; by these exposures, he loses all public and private cast, 
confidence, respect, aud sympathy. 

A legislator on duty has no more right to talk about himself 
and his own affairs than a judge from the bench or a preacher 
in his pulpit has a right to gabble about his private agonies; 
and the judge and the priest, with the same propriety and license, 
might threaten and attempt to flog and shoot any one they had 
a spite at, as for a member of any public convention to do it. 

The clergyman or judge who should thus violate the rules of 
good order, and common respect for the feelings of the public, 
would be despised and shunned as a ruffian or a pagan. 

There is no difference between these cases and the same viola- 
tion by legislators, except that the church and the court-house 
would soon be deserted by the audience. Whereas the Senate 
chamber will never be abandoned by the rabble so long as the 
prize-fighters in the ring are well fed and hissed on. 

These gladiators seem to forget that they are servants and 
not masters; that, while they are in their official places, their 
names should be only used for designation, and their persons 
and faculties as mere organs of representative duty. 

That their allegiance demands the devotion of all their ener- 
gies for pacification ; that personalities, incivility, harsh language, 
and rash conduct, wholly destroy all their influence and use- 

That it is their high and solemn duty, in profound wisdom, 
and with anxious persuasion, to forbear, conciliate, and compro- 
mise, and in respectful silence implicitly submit to majorities. 

And that all these things should be reverently and devoutly 
done even at the peril of their lives. 

They are dispatched from the people as missionaries, for pro- 
moting national peace and preserving constitutional concord, 
and not for clamor, insurrection, and revolution. 

It is just as essential for the attainment of success in legisla- 

398 politics. 

tion most resolutely to abstain from violence and force as it is 
necessary, for success in battle, fearlessly and promptly to em- 
ploy violence and force both. 

In the first case, they are elements of certain defeat; and in 
the latter case, they are most inevitably necessary and essential 
for victory : menace, violence, and deadly weapons are overt acts 
of high treason in a legislative body; just as much as it would 
be perjury and treason not to use and employ violence with the 
most sanguinary and deadly resolution, if so required, on the 
field of battle. 

The man who sinks the dignity of his high and holy station 
in the council chamber of his country, surrenders himself to the 
fierce and ferocious control of his factious and vulgar temper, 
and lifts his arm, his poniard, or his pistol, against his peer, 
could not be trusted in the heat of battle; self, sordid, secret 
self, would burst his craven soul at the bastion or the breach, 
and he would creep away and skulk off like a kill sheep dog. 

Such a miscreant would have but one course left for immor- 
tality, and that would be to blow his own brains out. If dead, 
from contempt he might be forgotten ; but while living, he could 
obtain no countenance or toleration, and must be held in utter 
scorn and detestation by every honest man. 

Suppose jurors were to act thus in open court; they would be 
presently committed to prison. Or suppose judges on the bench 
were to act in like manner; would they not be impeached and 
dismissed from office? Would the public allow such men to 
continue in power ? Certainly not. And where is the differ- 
ence, except that senators hold higher and more sacred places, 
which increases their obligations for duty, and that they are not 
amenable to a direct supervisory tribunal for punishment, 
wherefore they take advantage of this immunity, and, like all 
politicians who are callous to the contempt and scorn of the 
people, turn their backs upon their masters, and audaciously 
continue to hold the seats they have desecrated? 

It cannot be denied, nor can it be too often repeated, that 
a legislator desecrates his duty and his oath when he permits 
his individual excitements to take place of his representative 
duty, even at the peril of his life. 

That it is the occasion and his position, and not his sensibili- 
ties, or even his life, that are to be first regarded : and, when he 
abandons and betrays the honor of his country, for the vulgar 
indulgence of his pride or his anger, in personal assaults, or 

politics. 399 

with deadly weapons upon his colleagues, he becomes a traitor 
to his country, and should be instantly voted from his seat by 
the members who have witnessed his treason. 

No personal disrespect is intended to the senators named. 
The statement of the transaction is an extract from the Phila- 
delphia Ledger, written by an eye-witness, published in all the 
papers, and never contradicted. The only purpose here is to 
mark down the fierce and intractable temper of man; the i*eck- 
less selfishness of politicians; the insult, in this instance, to 
the nation; and the high obligation every citizen in this repub- 
lic is under, whether in or out of office, to respect, revere, and 
obey the sovereign people, and their free and sacred institu- 

Soldiers and legislators, under all emergencies, should govern 
themselves by the heroic spirit and stern devotion that so emi- 
nently distinguished the Roman sentinels who, eighteen hun- 
dred years after they had been buried alive, were found at their 
posts in the ramparts of Herculaueum, and Pompeii, as firm, 
erect, and armed at all points, as they were when these cities 
were buried up by the volcanic eruptions of Mount Vesuvius. 

At the outset, politicians are too often good for nothing, and 
wholly destitute of the elements of true manhood; and if at the 
beginning they have a few good qualities, the indulgences and 
practices they pursue soon destroy all the good there is about 

They procure themselves to be constantly lithographed, and 
slung up in the windows and at the corners, and puffed by 
paragraphs, poked into the newspapers, until every manly and 
proud attribute they have is choked off by egotism and self- 

By these deceptions, they sometimes fraudulently work them- 
selves up into a sort of artificial eminence in the public eye; but, 
as a general rule, they are decidedly below the second-rate order 
of character and talents. 

Thousands engaged in the common pursuits of life are far 
superior to them. The newspapers are paid by them to get up 
and encourage a fashion to flatter, and concede to them the 
possession and display of strong powers and sagacity; but this 
is false and fictitious, for there is scarcely one of them in a life- 
time who exhibits as much intellect and success as a score do 
in private life in a single day or month ; and very few of them 


have ever had energy and talents enough to earn their own 
bread by any personal pursuit. 

They are generally lazy, intemperate, licentious, prodigal, 
and profane; essentially selfish, with no governing or control- 
ling spirit of patriotism ; their country is a secondary considera- 
tion; their ever present and overruling passion is self, the thirst 
to get and hold office, and the hunger for preferment and pro- 

The personal- pronoun "J" is forever on their lips; they can 
talk of nothing but themselves; the first lesson of decorum and 
good-breeding taught by every intelligent mother, not to speak 
of one's self, or to or of others in terms of defiance or chal- 
lenge, forms no part of the practical or mental discipline of a 

Mr. Calhoun, Mr. Webster, Mr. Benton, Mr. Cass, Mr. Van 
Buren, and Mr. Clay, who are amongst the most respectable 
statesmen of the United States, have spent half their lives in 
ostentatious and vapid definitions of their positions, and uncalled- 
for vindications of their public acts; they have all been stand- 
ing and veteran candidates for the Presidency. 

These avowed and encouraged aspirations afford them wide 
and hidden influences. 

The incentive for sinister intrigue is so overwhelming that 
their disinterested and sterling independence is put in jeo- 

Such immense power, and its perilous proximity to secret 
temptations, wholly forbid the propriety of their official tenure; 
and the dictates of honor and delicacy demand that such in- 
cumbents should resign. 

Unless men possess very high and elevated attributes of pa- 
triotism and sound good sense, such as distinguished George 
Washington and Roger Sherman, political occupations seem to 
degenerate, and not improve the character. 

The true remedy for this, and all other evils springing from 
abuses of office, is to break up the practice of their indefinite 
tenure, and confine them to a single term. 

They get no wiser for the good of the people, but more crafty 
for themselves, arrogant, and headstrong. 

Some of these veterans in office have done serious mischief 
to the State; they have drawn in question settled national and 
constitutional law, fanned up the flames of discord, and made sad 
and mournful the best hopes of the patriot. 


The undisguised truth and explanation of all these excite- 
ments in Congress is not that which appears upon the face of 
the enactments of the parties, to wit, patriotism and right, 
but the fierce spirit of party and faction strife, stimulated by 
hope, and covert schemes for power and place. 

If any seven or nine intelligent and honest men were selected 
free from these infatuations, the whole dispute about slavery 
and New Mexico could have been honorably settled in ten 

But, when Messrs. Clay, Benton, Webster, and half a dozen 
more senators and representatives, are rabid for the Presi- 
dency — and more than every other man of all the rest of both 
Houses are equally ferocious for embassies, contracts, schemes, 
and tricks, and preferments, from the coming presidents, all the 
candidates for which they are secretly leagued with — how is it 
to be expected that the country shall not be the victim of re- 
finements in plots and frauds by this bevy of adroit and auda- 
cious gamesters? 

The ostensible object of all political strife is to correct 
alleged abuses. All objects of preferment, gain, or office are 
disclaimed; and where this is the real object, the demand for 
inquiry and investigation should not be restrained. In this 
pursuit for truth, there should be no falsehood or abuse, no ap- 
peal to the passions, or invidious comparisons between the rich 
and the poor ; this is impudent and vulgar; it is as much as to 
say, and equivalent to telling a man that he is honest or decent, 
which implies doubts, and suggests vindication. Everything on 
such occasions should be conducted and done openly and decor- 
ously, as if in a court of justice, and, if wrong is detected, it 
should be punished. 

Town meetings and elections should be regarded as the fore- 
rooms of the country, and their speech and conduct should be 
as circumspect as those of judicial tribunals. The appeal is to 
the ballot box, the altar upon which all hopes for liberty rest : 
that place of rebuke to the demagogue, and redress for the peo- 
ple ; that boon for hope against wrong ; that bloodless civil war 
and lawful revolution. All this is manlike and noble ; no force 
should be allowed : and the man who uses violence or fraud 
about, before, at, or after an election, should be held guilty, 
and punished with the pains and penalties of high treason. 

If there is wrong, inexcusable, fatal wrong, let resistance and 


revolution be open, with names and published vindications ; but 
nothing should be done by intrigue, fraud, or violence. 

Venality is so strongly infused into the springs and sources 
of faction, that it becomes a part of its nature and essence, and 
as unavoidable as physical contagion. The most resolute pre- 
servation of health is as soon defeated by infectious proximity as 
the honest resolutions of the politician are frustrated by de- 
praved associations. He cannot be honest, if he would ; the 
force of example, plausible schemes and opinions, soon over- 
come conscientious scruples. Instances of infatuation and 
moral dereliction so frequently occur with persons engaged in 
politics, as to shake all confidence in their integrity. 

Mr. Polk's letter, and his subsequent conduct about the tariff j 
Governor Johnston's stump assurances and executive tergiver- 
sation about the odious relief bills of Pennsylvania ; and 
General Taylor's repeated, voluntary, and gratuitously written 
pledges for non-official deposition, except for good cause, and 
his subsequent disregard of this promise, are startling proofs 
of the degenerate and daring derelictions of all politicians. 
They were, no doubt, in earnest when they gave these assur- 
ances, and they were elected upon the supposed sincerity of 
their intentions ; but subsequent considerations of conventional 
and secret policy seduced them from the path of faith, and the 
world is left to mourn an unexplained departure from truth by 
men supposed to be models of honor and rank. 

These, and similar instances, go far to destroy all confidence 
in the integrity of politicians. 

The whole system of political intrigue is repulsive and re- 
volting. Few gentlemen of refined and elevated sensibilities can 
brook the rude insolence to which public and political admix- 
tures constantly expose them. 

Party men and leaders are bitter, cruel, and brutal ; they 
carry firearms, and openly proclaim their readiness for chal- 
lenges and duels ; from this fashionable brutality there is no 
escape from murder or the brand of cowardice. 

No man ever left a wrangle unharmed ; if wrong, the public 
sympathies, which are always blind, may fall upon him ; if 
right, their unsparing prejudices may crush him to the earth. 
It is not, therefore, marvelous that men of dignity and inde- 
pendence of character should shrink from the feverish excite- 
ments and disgusting contact of public occupation. 

If elevated and distinguished minds are referred to as ex- 


amples, the lofty spirits of intellect and honor, in all ages, 
have been found more frequently in the genial shades of private 
life, or in the temples of science, than in the offensive arenas of 
political strife. 

However necessary and laudable the general devotion to 
habits of industry, and the practical business of life may be ; 
and though there are families and circles in which no grace, no 
charm, no accomplishment is wanting ; yet it cannot be denied 
that the empire of dollars, cents, and material interests holds 
a very preponderating sway, and that art and all its train of 
humanities exercise at present but an enfeebled and restricted 
influence. If we ascend from social to political life, and from 
manners to institutions, we should find that the endless cycles 
of electioneering preparations and contests leave no intermis- 
sion for repose in the public mind; enter into all the relations 
of existence; subordinate to themselves every other question 
of internal and foreign policy; lead their public men, not their 
best, but the average of them, to pander to the worst prejudices, 
the meanest tastes, the most malignant resentments of the peo- 
ple; at each change of administration incite the new rulers to 
carry the spirit of proscription into every department of the pub- 
lic service, from the minister at a great foreign court to the 
postmaster of some half-barbarous outpost — thus tending to 
render those, whose functions ought to withdraw them the most 
completely from party influences, the most unscrupulous parti- 
sans ; and would make large masses welcome war, and even ac- 
quiesce in ruin, if it appeared that they could thus counteract 
the antagonist tactics, humiliate the rival leader, or remotely 
influence the election of the next President. 

It is already painfully felt that, as far as the universal choice 
of the people was relied on to secure for the highest office of 
the State the most commanding ability or the most signal merit, 
it may be pronounced to have failed. The time of the House 
of Representatives, not without cost to the constituent body 
which pays for their services, is continuously taken up, when 
not engrossed by a speech of some days' duration, with wrangles 
upon points of order and angry recriminations ; the language 
used in debate has occasionally sounded the lowest depths of 
coarse and virulent acrimony, as the floor of the legislative hall 
has actually been the scene of violent personal rencontre. The 
manners of the barely civilized west, where it has been known 
that counsel challenge judges on the bench, and members of 


the legislature fire off rifles at the speaker as he sits in the 
chair, would appear to be gradually invading the very inner 
.shrine of the Constitution. 

It cannot be concealed that the reckless notions and habits of 
the vagrant pioneers of the west — evinced as these are by the 
practices of gambling, drinking, and licentiousness, by an habi- 
tual disregard of the Sabbath, and constant swearing — fearfully 
disfigure that great Valley of the Mississippi, destined, inevita- 
bly, at no distant day, to be the preponderating section of the 
entire Union. It is, at this day, impossible to go into any 
society, especially of the older and more thoughtful men, some 
of whom may themselves have borne an eminent part in the 
earlier struggles and service of the commonwealth, without 
hearing the degeneracy of modern times, and the downward 
tendency of all things, despondingly insisted upon. 

"One of the expedients of party to acquire influence within 
particular districts, is to misrepresent the opinions and aims of 
other districts. You cannot shield yourselves too much against 
the jealousies and heart-burnings which spring from these mis- 
representations. They tend to render alien to each other those 
who ought to be bound together by fraternal affection. 

" There is constant danger of the excess of party spirit. The 
effort ought to be by the force of public opinion to mitigate and 
assuage it. A fire not to be quenched, it demands a uniform 
vigilance to prevent its bursting into a flame, lest, instead of 
wanning, it should consume." — Washington's Farewell Ad- 

" America seems really to be cursed with some selfish, mean 
politicians, who, through gross ignorance and entire reckless- 
ness of moral principles, add only views of the most narrow and 
sordid character, and are incapable of understanding upon any 
large and comprehensive principle of right and justice, and of 
regarding, with a single eye, the great interests of humanity." 
— Colman's Letters, vol. i. p. 183. 



None fit for certain offices under fifty years of age — Should hold office for 
four years only, except clerks, &c. — Qualifications — Causes of incom- 
petency for offices — Huckstering politicians — Thomas Jefferson's letter 
— Veto power. 

All elections by electoral colleges and legislative bodies, 
and all appointments by presidents, governors, collectors, &c, 
except military and naval officers, ambassadors, consuls, clerks, 
servants, and laborers, and to fill vacancies till tbe next election, 
should be forever abolished. 

All officers, except those last named, should be elected by 
a general ticket, and by the direct vote of a plurality of the 
ballots cast by all the white male, free, native, lawful voters 
within the township, city, county, State, &c, for which the 
office is intended, including the executive, legislature, and judi- 
ciary of the general, State, and territorial governments. 

This would not inequitably interfere with a general repre- 
sentation in the choice of national officers, by their election by 
the people of the district for which they are intended. 

The district judges, collectors, and port-master would be se- 
lected by a portion, instead of the whole people of the United 
States, as is now the theory. 

There is, however, more show than substance in this; and the 
apparent inconsistency would be entirely reconciled by its re- 
ciprocal character and results ; for, while the citizens of Boston, 
or Massachusetts, being but an integral part of the whole peo- 
ple, elect a judge, collector, or port-master, this supposed incon- 
gruity would be counterbalanced by the exercise of like power 
by the citizens of every other district ; the services of these 
agents would be executed for the special accommodation of 
those by whom they were elected. 

Their selection or nomination would be from amongst, and 
by those whom they immediately serve, and their commissions 
would come from the whole people. 


The President, and Vice-President, and secretaries of the de- 
partments of the United States, and the governors and execu- 
tive officers of the States, the senators and representatives in 
Congress, and all judicial and legislative officers, should be 
native born, fifty years old, hold their offices but four years, 
and be afterwards ineligible for the same office. 

The chief executive officers of every government should be 
of similar birth and age, and derive their appointment from the 
same plurality of suffrage, and hold it for the same term, and 
with like ineligibility, and serve out their term of office to- 
gether, so as to secure their harmony and usefulness. 

Where a district has more than one judge, or legislator, the 
half, or the one-third of them, according to their number, 
should succeed each other every two years. 

Politics and office are used as business and trade. Persons 
in power seldom act on the merits of a case ; the truth and 
right but seldom govern ; private influences prevail ; a friend 
to reward, an enemy to punish, if not a corrupt inducement to 
incite, is ever in the way of impartial and independent action 
with incumbents superficially qualified, with loose morals, care- 
lessly selected, and holding place to secure its continuance, or 
as a stepstone for another post. There is now none of the an- 
cient dignity of government. 

The solemnities of authority are treated with derision, and 
there is an entire relaxation in the discipline and decorums of 

One reason for this perhaps is that children are not tho- 
roughly educated and prepared for their trades and callings, and 
are not made workmen and masters, with well grounded and 
resolute habits of industry and morality. 

They pass their minority in idleness, and are suffered to go 
into the world but half fitted for its responsibilities. 

Hence the swarms of lazy and presumptuous adventurers 
who precipitate themselves, unqualified, into the professions; 
the bankrupts from every half-tried pursuit at public meet- 
ings seeking office ; the presidents, secretaries, and directors of 
banks, insurance offices, brokers and stock-jobbers, who have 
failed in business, because they have not had stability to pre- 
pare themselves for, and patient resolution to follow up, the 
pursuit or trade with which they began life. 

No man should be employed by the people who has shown 
himself unfit to manage his own affairs ; a lawyer, a doctor, or 


any one whose learning, industry, and brains are inadequate to 
command a respectable and honorable patronage, is unfit to be 
a judge, or to hold any office. 

A storekeeper, a mechanic, or any other man, who has not 
had industry, skill, and prudence to succeed in his own busi- 
ness has not enough to be a corporation director, an officer in 
the custom house, a member of the legislature, or to hold any 
other office; and yet the most important offices are too often 
given to such men. 

If a man will not behave himself so as to command the con- 
fidence and patronage of his fellow-citizens, and thereby be en- 
abled to make a respectable living in his private trade or pur- 
suit, he is unfit to undertake the business of the public. There 
is no instance in which such men have not made bad officers. 
They do nothing themselves, throw it upon lads for clerks ; no 
system or order is preserved, and everything is neglected. 

The same rules which require suitable preparation for a trade 
or profession apply with greater reason and force to an appro- 
priate education for public duty. Mere party faith, importu- 
nity, and personal popularity should have no weight in selections 
for office; the first and fundamental inquiry should be as to his 
integrity and his entire fitness for all the duties and details of 
the office. 

Nothing can more effectually bring the man, and his office, 
and the law, into contempt, than an ignorant, incompetent, or 
dishonest incumbent. 

Lazy and ignorant mechanics push themselves into the of- 
fices of justices of the peace, county officers, judicial, legisla- 
tive, and other stations, without any suitable qualification. 

What would be thought of an alderman who committed a 
defendant to prison for contempt, because he offered to enter an 
appeal from his judgment? — or of one who avowed that he al- 
ways heard the parties patiently through, and then entered 
judgment according to law; that is, according to his rule of 
law, which was the form of a judgment entry for plaintiff, given 
him by his attorney when he took his commission, and in which 
there was no blank to fill up but the amount, in which he said 
he could not err, for he always made the plaintiff name the sum, 
and thus he was clear of all responsibility, leaving the parties 
to their remedy by an appeal ? 

Or what opinion of the intelligence of the magistracy would 


come from a trial, sentence, and commitment, by a justice, of a 
thief to the state prison for two years ? 

And yet all these blunders have been made by three several 
magistrates, all of whom were honest, amiable, and respectable. 

One was a shoemaker, another was a baker, and the last was 
a tailor; and each held respectable rank in his trade, but was 
wholly ignorant of the duties of his office. 

They appeared to be very much mortified when told that 
they had done wrong; but they showed the law, as they called 
it, for their judgments; and the explanation could not be beaten 
into their heads. 

Such men might do for constables or watchmen. 

Uneducated, and very young men, mere politicians, intrigue 
themselves on to the bench, where they blunder, flounder, and 
expose themselves, to the grievous annoyance and reproach of 
the country. 

Legislatures are annually filled with ignorant and verdant 
blockheads, who bring scandal on the State, and retard its pros- 

The pugnacious resolution and impudent pertinacity with 
which these miserable drones urge themselves into office are in- 

They visit rum-holes, and sit on fire-plugs, smoke, and drink, 
and drive about with the lowest dregs, get up crusades, petty 
combinations, and false reports about competitors, sneer at those 
who are fit, call them proud and aristocratic, deal out all sorts of 
promises for rewards, and thus, by dint of shameless tricks and 
intrigues, get themselves a party nomination by delegates chosen 
at places, and amidst violence and crowds, where decent men 
cannot go, and where, if they do go, they are hustled away, or 
cheated out of their delegation. 

Stage-drivers, grog-sellers, low, lazy mechanics, jockeys, and 
blacklegs, boldly canvass for and get offices, the duties of which 
they never pretend to know or execute. 

An ignorant shoemaker, hatter, carpenter, mason, and cigar- 
maker, scarcely able to write their names, and wholly unfit, are 
fraudulently pushed into the offices of sheriff, register of wills, 
recorder of deeds, clerk of a court, member of the legislature, 
and even into Congress. 

The uneducated sons of a shoemaker, a tailor, butcher, and 
a drayman, with their trades half learned, join debating and 
Thespian clubs, spout, and rave about at minor theatres, poli- 


tical meetings — work, that is, half work at their trades, while 
they go through a fraudulent preliminary study of law with, 
and obtain a certificate from, some hired pettifogger; are put 
back for ignorance; then beg, and urge, and implore, and 
whine, and blubber about, till from pity they are licensed; 
lick the feet, and do the dirty jobs for faction-men; and get on 
to the bench, where they form collusions, and turn all their 
power and influence to axe-grinding, read the news, whistle, 
sing, buy lottery-policies, and hold sidebar cabals, during the 
trial of cases, which they never listen to, understand, or decide; 
put down, and persecute every intelligent man of firmness and 
honor in their way; keep about them a swarm of unprincipled, 
ignorant, and extortionate cubs, spies, pimps, and masters, to 
do their infamous bidding; grant tavern-licenses to the aban- 
doned keepers of brothels, gambling, and dance-houses, huts, 
and dens on the wharves, and in holes and alleys, in open vio- 
lation of law, and against the remonstrances of thousands of 
respectable people. 

Thus, to secure gangs for ward-elections, to make forced re- 
turns of delegates, forced nominations, forced and fraudulent 
elections of miscreants, and caitiffs, convert to their own use 
the funds and power of the county and State, have roads opened, 
and damages assessed by their own juries, graveyards, and 
front lots sold on speculation; and boldly and openly defy, op- 
press, and plunder the community. 

These are a few of the literal disastrous and pernicious con- 
sequences which have come from putting into office men with- 
out education or morals; base-born, low-bred, ignorant, and 
impudent adventurers, and whose only object is to accommodate 
their private and sordid passions. 

Public affairs should not be confided to ignorant men, of 
loose, idle, and extravagant habits, of questionable skill and 
doubtful judgment. 

That office emoluments are so low as to prevent men of merit 
from taking them, is untrue. The competitors are crafty and 
importunate, the people are too careless and credulous, and 
thus too many ignorant and mere fourth-rate men in mind are 

Including the Judges of the Common Picas, the custom- 
house, the post-office, and all the city and county offices in 
Philadelphia, there is not now, perhaps, a man of them all 
who ever made, or was fit to make, by his profession, or his in- 


dividual occupation, one-tenth part of that which he gets hy his 
office. Some of them are grossly ignorant, and one of them, 
recently, with a salary of $2000, was detected in not being 
able to read or write, except to make the letters of his name ; 
his duties were all performed by clerks. 

Let them be respectively named and tested, and these state- 
ments will be found to be true, for the last twenty-five years at 

Some of them are brawling, heartless intriguers, without edu- 
cation, experience, or character, and have held one office after 
another, for twenty years, without any suitable qualification for 
any of them. 

This is general throughout the whole country, and the attacks 
which have been made upon the salaries and fees of office have 
been prompted more from disgust at the incompetency and de- 
graded character of the officers than from any penurious feel- 

The people of the United States live better, and pay better 
wages to their employees, than any other people ; and, if their 
public servants were temperate, just, and competent, their ser- 
vices would be ungrudgingly and liberally requited. 

If the offices were given to none but those above fifty, the 
incumbents could afford to work cheaper, perhaps, than young 
men; the expenses of old men are not so heavy, and they arc 
more likely to have their own means of subsistence; the con- 
ference of public confidence at that age would be held as a 
compliment, commanding the gratitude and best efforts of the 

Ministerial and subordinate officers, under-clerks, deputy- 
sheriffs, constables, &c, for which maturity of judgment and 
sound experience are not essential, might be given to younger 
men ; but it would be safer for all the important places to be 
filled from amongst those whose days have reached the test 
and the summit of human skill and integrity. 

The notions that young men should be encouraged, and that 
one who has held office well should not be removed, or, if so, 
be promoted, are ignorant vulgarisms, and impudent excuses 
for public abuse, to advantage personal cupidity. 

The community is composed chiefly of those who are ut- 
terly helpless; infants, minors, females, the weak in body and 
mind, the infirm from sickness and old age, the poor — or of 
the most base and abandoned, the lazy, peace- breakers, thieves, 


rogues, and scoundrels, of every age and in every sphere in 
life, from the gutters to the gallows; from the altar to the 

The proportion above the calamities of the former, and the 
abasements of the latter, are few; and the whole responsibilities 
of sustaining the organization of society rest on them. 

This trust involves the occasion for the very best men with 
the best capacities. There should not be blended with this 
serious and solemn duty the slightest levity, cupidity ; no selfish- 
ness, or lack of fitness or integrity ; no accommodation ; no pre- 
judice of the general good; every private consideration should 
yield to the public weal; and before they enter upon the duties 
of office, even at this age, they should be rigidly examined by a 
board of older, retired, and competent judges of their qualifi- 

No other objects but these should be consulted; the highest 
and most sacred motives should govern the whole scope of this 
eminent and awful i-esponsibility; and the slightest departure 
from its pious execution, however innocent or plausible, should 
be universally condemned as unmanly and profane. 

There are spheres for the indulgence of all the lawful aspira- 
tions for gain, preferment, and distinction, upon the fields of 
industry, science, and the arts, without the brutal perpetration 
of our worst passions upon the holy vestments and consecrated 
altar of the people. 

As a safeguard for these abuses, no one should be judged fit 
for public service who has not outlived the influence of early 

There is no criterion of the human character so safe and cer- 
tain as the touchstone of time; it is an ordeal by which the 
truth and the strength of merit can be more safely tested than 
by any other criterion. 

Hypocrisy is too shallow and superficial to last for fifty years ; 
and in that period the distinction between the affectations of 
knowledge, genius, and industry, and the actual possession of 
these virtues, will be discovered. A man of intelligence who 
has reached the age of fifty years, with habits of industry and 
integrity, and without a spot upon his character, will not then 
find it worth while to betray his country. 

Until the qualifications have been thus exposed, there is no 
safety in their certainty and stability ; after this scrutiny, the 


opportunity is given to the public to use as much caution in the 
choice of their agents as can be desired. 

At that age and under these restrictions, there would seem 
to be no sinister motive left; an instance perhaps might be chal- 
lenged of a delinquency in fitness or faith by any respectable 
functionary whose selection has been governed by these safe 
and careful precautions. 

The human temper with the young is naturally irritable and 
impetuous; the impulses sudden and blind; hope is ardent, and 
fear is quick, the judgment is weak; the lack of experience, the 
keen stimulations of pride, the provoking rivalry of cotempo- 
raries, the strife and competition for gain and preferment — all 
these generate overruling excitements and temptations, which 
nothing can allay or mellow down but the clear-sighted facul- 
ties and cool blood of old age. 

Thus tested and found true, they reflect back on the world 
the bright image of their Almighty Maker. 

Enough of these precious jewels can be found in every com- 
munity, with four ripe years for their children and their coun- 
try; and wisdom bids us confide the administration of our laws 
with their purity and patriotism. 


I received in due season the address of the General Assembly 
of Pennsylvania, under cover from the Speakers of the two 
Houses, in which, with their approbation of the general course 
of my administration, they were so good as to express their de- 
sire that I would consent to be proposed again to the public 
voice, on the expiration of my present term of office. Enter- 
taining, as I do, for the General Assembly of Pennsylvania, those 
sentiments of high respect which would have prompted an im- 
mediate answer, I was certain, nevertheless, they would approve 
a delay which had for its object to avoid a premature agitation 
of the public mind on a subject so interesting as the election of 
a chief magistrate. 

That I should lay down my charge at a proper period, is as 
much a duty as to have borne it faithfully. If some termina- 
tion to the services of our chief magistrate be not fixed upon by 
the Constitution, or supplied by practice, his office, nominally for 
years, will, in fact, become for life; and history shows how easily 
that degenerates into an inheritance. Believing that a repre- 
sentative government, responsible at short periods of elections, 


is that which produces the greatest scene of happiness to man- 
kind, I feel it a duty to do no act which shall essentially impair 
that principle; and I should unwillingly be the person who, 
disregarding the sound precedent set by an illustrious predecessor, 
should furnish the first example of prolongation beyond the se- 
cond term of office. 

Truth also requires me to add that I am sensible of that 
decline which advancing years bring on ; and feeling their phy- 
sical, I ought not to doubt their mental effect ; happy if I am 
the first to perceive and to obey this admonition of nature, and to 
solicit a retreat from cares too great for the wearied faculties of 

For the approbation which the General Assembly of Penn- 
sylvania has been pleased to express of the principles and mea- 
sures pursued, in the management of their affairs, I am sincerely 
thankful : And should I be so fortunate as to carry into retire- 
ment the equal approbation and good will of my fellow-citizens 
generally, it will be the comfort of my future days, and will 
close a service of forty years with the only reward it ever 


Dec. 10th, 1807. 

Did the self-sufficient vanity of any man under forty or fifty 
years of age ever make the concessions of patriotism, and deve- 
lop the unaffected good sense, which are contained in this letter? 

The veto power, lodged with executives, is discussed in 
Chapter XIX., upon Governments, to meet occasions of unfit- 
ness and corruption with officers. 

The people should make a law, giving themselves the power 
to veto any officer out of office, and elect another in his place 
at any annual election, before the commencement of the last 
year of his term, if the term be far more than one year. The 
people have the same right to put a man out as to put him into 
office. They will not be apt to dismiss an incumbent without 
cause; they will be more likely to overlook his faults than to 
resent them ; and to be deceived by his concealment of them 
after he is elected, as they are too apt to be before he is ap- 
pointed. This has always and everywhere been their cause. 

There is a prevalent notion that the dignity of government 
and the character of the people require that officers and men 



in power should be treated with great personal reverence, and 
that their motives and official acts are presumed to be just. 
This last proposition is an abstract rule of law required to pre- 
serve the validity of contracts and to secure the integrity of titles, 
but mistake or fraud will nullify any executive legislative or 
judicial act. 

But the ridiculous and humiliating servility usually made to 
them springs from a sinister or cowardly propensity to crouch 
before men in place and power. 

The men in office who have received the most cordial marks 
of personal respect and the largest concessions of confidence in 
all times have been distinguished for wisdom, purity, and unaf- 
fected simplicity of deportment. 

It is the vain and the ignorant who presumptuously seek 
for, and demand from the public acknowledgments of official 

Whenever officers are detected in official malversations, they 
become objects of public hatred ; all their official acts are dis- 
trusted ; reproach is brought upon them, aud government and 
the people should hold the power to dismiss them. 

Impeachment for incompetency, neglect, corruption, or for 
any cause, is a farce. The culprits employ their accustomed 
intrigues, and, with the aid of their depraved and abandoned 
confederates, baffle and defy impeachment; 



Public opinion and character controlled by the bad — Their power hidden 
— Selfish — Attack slavery — Amalgamation — Not sincere — Extort money 
by pretensions of charity, &c, instead of helping the weak, the 
idiots, &c. — Politicians — Officers — Pettifoggers — Quacks — Judges — Dis- 
tinctions here and in Europe defined — Judges and classes — Cases of 
ignorance, &c. — Arts, sophistry, and force of public opinion — Character 
by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania — No escape from public opinion 
— Its fatal effects — Cases — Comparisons of mind and morals — Caution — 
Counter-plotting — Washington and a spy — &c. 

Occasions of great mental anguish come from causes so 
hidden and secondary in their character as wholly to escape 
the observation of all except the intelligent and experienced. 

A desire to have the good opinion of others prevails with 
every one, either from a generous feeling towards others, or 
from a selfish wish for their association. 

When those who have feelings of mutual benevolence con- 
cur, their happiness is invaluable. Unfortunately for them, 
this generous spirit is not general. 

They soon discover that but few have kind sympathies, and 
that the world is wholly selfish and sordid. 

The predominating propensities of bad men are envy, selfish- 
ness, and treachery. They capriciously dictate, and arbitrarily 
control "public opinion." They hold secret dominion over the 
timid and retired, who are afraid to resent them, or vindicate 

An analysis of these complicated subjects will not be at- 
tempted. Their general features will be grouped, and an effort 
will be made to mark out and expose their secret operations 
upon the heart. 

The pain we suffer under the delusions referred to is excru- 
ciating and sometimes fatal. It constitutes a large portion of 
the mental and secret sources of all human misery. 

A L'ood character for ourselves and for our friends is of such 


infinite value to them and us, that it frequently excites the jea- 
lousy even of those who hold a neutral position in society, if it 
conflicts with their interest or pride, and always provokes the 
envy of the wicked and the hatred of our enemies. 

Those wholly indifferent to us are generally too much occu- 
pied with themselves to feel any solicitude for our welfare ; on 
the contrary, they want our room, and if they notice us at all, 
it is with distrust and not with sympathy. So that this indi- 
vidual supervision is much more of a delusion than is supposed. 
Instead of our having occasion to court its favors, policy and 
discretion bid us keep out of its way. 

But there is another portion of the world, the people, the 
public, who assume to themselves all the morals, religion, and 
respectability of society ; and under these plausible pretensions 
of superiority they conspire to form corporations, profess patriot- 
ism, philanthropy, get up places of reformation, and monopo- 
lize the offices, dignities, honors, and wealth of the world. It 
is impossible to shun or avoid them. 

Their selfishness and craft have no reserve; on the contrary, 
they mingle with, deceive, betray, and feed upon the world. 

For example, they single out slavery, which has been solemn- 
ly settled in the United States for sixty years, as a pretext for 
sedition and revolt ; because it ministers to the morbid appe- 
tites, of the infatuated, ignorant mob, and enables them to de- 
lude, mislead, and plunder. 

They denounce the Constitution a league with hell, because 
the States that made that compact were all slave States, and 
would not all agree that it should be abolished by a national 
law, when this effort was most zealously pressed and failed, 
because there was no right to demand or power to enforce it. 

They proclaim the falsehood that the articles of the con- 
federation, which were made by a plurality of votes, the voting 
being by States, could have had abolition forced into it; where- 
as, nothing could have been done without the consent of all the 
States, and nothing was done but by compromise; and if they 
had separated upon that point, the whole country would have 
been left open to anarchy and foreign subjugation. 

Absurd as these doctrines are, because they excite and in- 
flame the ignorant, this fanatical and insurrectionary faction in 
the North, where it is said and not denied there are no slaves, 
or fugitive slaves, has raised more money out of the infatuated 
rabble to pay abusive, itinerant detainers, and for the circula- 


tion of incendiary pamphlets, than would have bought all the 
slaves in the United States. This fact has been stated by men 
of truth, and is not denied. 

It amounts to several millions of dollars. A very small 
part of it has been applied to the purposes for which it was 
raised, but it has been withheld, and used by the artful leaders 
of this faction for their licentious indulgences. 

They hit upon a popular and sympathetic subject, and thus 
artfully rob the people in the name of charity and benevolence. 

The poor slave, the widow, the orphan, and the pagan, have 
millions raised for them which they never get, and which is 
used by these wolves in sheep's clothing. 

Thousands are supported in affluence and prodigality all their 
lives upon these fraudulent extortions. 

Have any of these noble and devout benefactors of the hu- 
man race ever had their accounts audited, or have they ever 
made report of what they have done with the money they get ? 

So, too, the pretended encouragement and improvements given 
to commerce and domestic economy, by way of monopolies, 
banks, and insurance companies, are all of them scandalous and 
barefaced swindling contrivances to rob the people. 

They have in the United States gleaned up, under simula- 
tions of serving the public, more than one hundred millions of 
its hard earnings. 

These sordid and refined swindlers ever have, and ever will 
prevail while the masses are so stupid and cowardly as to suffer 
the arrogant self-love and audacious vanity of the popular rabble 
to delude and bewilder them by ostentatious simulations of 

It is by these means that they hold despotic sway over " cha- 
racter" and "public opinion" and control the popular feeling. 

If they were sincere in their professions, why do they not 
get up these excitements and infatuations for some object of 
real and practical benevolence, which can be accomplished by 
the concurrence of good men, without conflict, agitation, or re- 
bellion ? 

Why not resolutely maintain the universal example and 
dignified reward of temperance and order, and peremptorily 
punish drunkenness and swindling, and crush into the earth all 
rowdies and mobs ? 

"Why not go into the alms-houses, and wretched hovels and 
garrets, and bring into the chambers of Christian charity and 


love the victims of seduction, treachery, and desertion, and stop 
the awful scenes of frantic madness, infanticide, and suicide ? 

Why not lift up these dark curtains of man's drunken bru- 
tality, and bid the world to gaze with horror on his coward 
tyranny of innocent and helpless women and children ? 

Why not emancipate from oppression, and provide common 
animal necessaries for, the thirty thousand idiots and insane, 
scattered over the United States, chained to rocks in open fields 
and in dismal cellars, garrets, and dungeons; naked and starved, 
and beaten and maimed like wild beasts? 

Why not employ their burning benevolence for an honest 
and intellectual course of appropriate education and discipline 
to the young, so that a stop shall be put to extortion and plun- 
der to pay for sending children to school from five to twenty- 
one years of age, to be afterwards turned out upon the world, 
drones and rowdies, instead of being educated and disciplined 
with habits of temperance and honest industry ? 

These are broad and pious fields for mercy and benevolence, 
but they do not suit the sordid propensities of these selfish 

They are not satisfied with efforts in which all good men 
may successfully unite ; because, in these pursuits, no room is 
allowed them to oppose the law, disturb the public peace, con- 
trol character, and plunder the community. 

This is one portion of the pernicious rabble that so fatally 
harass the world. And this substantive " rabble" is intended to 
nominate all those who are in any way not honestly minding 
their own business. 

Again, there is no end to the individual and conventional 
domineering of the upstart, purse-proud corporation, and politi- 
cal aristocracy of the United States, in their efforts to delude 
the retired portions of society, and establish a standard for 
public opinion and character. 

They run in upon and interrupt, and vex the feelings and 
embarrass the pursuits of, all honest and industrious men, and 
extort from them, by taxes, frauds, and swindling, millions of 
their hard earnings. 

More than one-half of the trading and money transactions of 
this country is carried on by plausible knaves and gamblers. 

There is no end to the ignorant and presumptuous quacks 
and pettifoggers in all the professions, nor to the stupidity, cor- 
ruption, and treachery of politicians, judges, and men in office. 


There is more money wasted and embezzled by corporation 
monopolies, more neglect of duty, gambling in patronage and 
contracts, and more overbearing insolence, insult, and persecu- 
tion of the retired, moral, and industrious, by those in place 
and position in the United States, than in any of the despotic 
nations of Europe. 

In those countries, distinctions and orders are sanctioned by 
immemorial usage, and the higher orders generally hold ac- 
knowledged attributes of parental patronage towards others 
Here they are forbidden by universal compact, but are fraudu- 
lently assumed and abused by those in place and power. There 
the people consent to, and cherish and flatter their aristocracy, 
who are expected to extend to them unaffected and generous 

Here the people utterly disapprove of all distinctions but 
industry and virtue ; and for this they are sneered at, de- 
spised, and persecuted by the mushroom earls and noblemen of 
the republic. 

But there are no abuses from these sources that inflict upon 
the people so many direct and insufferable burdens as the 
courts of law. They have direct power over public opinion and 

Of all officers, judges should be most pure, patient, and 
learned, whereas they are ambitious, vapid demagogues, or 
vulgar, lazy, ignorant, grog-shop pettifoggers ; and few are gen- 
tlemen of learning and honor. 

Those of the first class use their offices as stepping-stones 
to higher posts, and eagerly seize upon every opportunity for 
display and popularity. 

A case of this description recently occurred, in which two 
of them had a fugitive slave before them, on a demand for resti- 

The claimant proved the identity, and that the negro was 
three or four years before then the slave of a man now dead. A 
certified copy of his will was offered to show that he had de- 
vised the slave to his son, which evidence it was proposed to 
follow up by proof of the sale of the slave by the son to the 

The copy of the will was objected to on the ground of the 
obscurity of the seal of the certifying officer. 

This objection was sustained, and the negro was discharged. 


This seemed to be an end to the matter, and no one but a 
puffed up blockhead would have presumed to say another word. 

But these judges were not so simple as to lose an opportu- 
nity to make capital for political effect before an immense and 
excited crowd. 

Inflated with pride and lust for higher office, they delivered 
a loud and elaborate harangue, which went the round of all the 
papers, in which, with great pomp, and zealous professions of 
patriotism, they gave a lame history of the constitutional and 
statutory slave-law ; proclaimed their determination fearlessly 
to maintain the Union and all its compromises, even if they had 
to send to the President of the United States for two thousand 
armed men to maintain the peace and enforce the law; and 
poured out a long and empty gasconade of trash and brag, with- 
out saying one word about the point on which the claim failed. 
So that all the amazed and wondering world, after reading this 
fierce and agitating tirade about what they threatened to do, 
that they had no power to do, were compelled to look after the 
" local items" of a previous day to find out what this cotton 
thunder was about; and no newspaper had independence enough 
to note down that these crafty weathercocks were drawing 
whales and weasels on the political horizon. 

Such judges try to hide their vapid egotism behind pretended 
display of sagacity, and presumptuous exhibitions of authority 
and power. 

Too many of them come to their seats late, restless and ex- 
cited ; read the newspapers ; walk up and down ; look out at the 
windows; hold private talk with chums and favorites; do not 
listen to or understand the cases on trial ; hastily decide, or 
impatiently pass them over for years, by which thousands of 
dollars are locked up, sometimes until the parties are dead; and 
insult, slander, and persecute those who complain of this denial 
of justice, rudely adjourn, and quit the court house for' the 
streets, and babbling intrigue. 

They do not read or study, or regard precedents or authority, 
and treat the legal principles in every case with careless haste, 
or as if wholly new, and as if, for the first time in the world, 
they were called onto decide them. 

They are governed by no settled or uniform rules as to evi- 
dence, contracts, titles, or personal security, and use their power 
to accommodate themselves and their associates, and to oppress 
and persecute those they hate. 


Every case is heard and passed upon as if it was before a 
town meeting. 

A drunken ignoramus has as good a chance for success before 
them as the best educated and most industrious lawyer, for he 
suits them better. 

What would be thought of a judge who should decide that 
a trustee is not bound to answer under oath, upon the general 
rule that a man cannot be compelled to testify against himself, 
when every lawyer should know that a trustee is the represent- 
ative of his principal, and therefore does not act for himself, 
and also that the legislature of that judge's State had passed a 
law requiring trustees thus to answer? 

Or of a judge who should decide that he was bound to 
execute a statute in force when he was sworn into office, though 
it had been afterwards repealed, and that he was not required 
to enforce a statute passed after he was sworn, because it was 
not embraced by the terms of his oath, and that this was the 
law in all the European governments, where, upon the death of a 
king and the accession of his successor, the newspapers showed 
that every one was sworn over again, for rebellion would not 
be treason without perjury, and there could be no perjury with- 
out an oath, and that this was one of the many errors of our 
new system, which the good sense and judgment of the courts 
were constantly called on to guard against ? 

Ignorant and absurd decisions of this character are constant- 
ly made with the most presumptuous arrogance, and the advo- 
cates who resist them are denounced, and their arguments 
treated with contempt and scorn. 

These are but a few of the individual and conventional plots 
to pervert "public opinion" to sordid purposes. 

In their aggregate capacities as governments, this rabble 
employ the same insidious frauds to hold sway over the public, 
and perpetrate the most ignorant inconsistencies. 

They oppress the people by levying millions of taxes in 
profligate experiments for the universal and indiscriminate 
education of all persons between the ages of five and twenty- 
one years, and for giving them all, black and white, a collegi- 
ate education, with a diploma, instead of paying for them by 
loans, to be paid hereafter by the beneficiaries themselves. 

Thus far this experiment has been attended with pernicious 

There has been no improvement in morals and knowledge, 


and still this visionary scheme is annually enlarged and extend- 
ed, and madly pursued, and persevered in. 

They invert the order of public policy, contract millions of 
debts and saddle them upon posterity, to pay for railroads 
which are used up and worn out in less than one age, and tax 
millions of money on the present generation to pay for use- 
less education, instead of paying for their railroads in cash 
and drawing bills on the next age for its education, so that they 
can see if it is worth the cost. This would give the experi- 
ment a fair trial. 

For the year 1850 one hundred and eleven dollars and 
eighty cents was assessed in Philadelphia, for county purposes, 
on the dwelling and store of a boot and shoe maker, no larger 
than is necessary for his family and business. 

The entire county assessment for that county this year is 
seven hundred and seventy-eight thousand three hundred and 
forty-eight dollars ; of this $778,348, $358,000 is for the poor 

It follows, therefore, that the assessed individual referred to, 
out of the one hundred and eleven dollars and eighty cents, 
pays annually more than fifty dollars for schooling the poor, 
and that this assessment, by an average increase of the last 
twenty years, will exceed two hundred dollars in 1870 more 
than his house would have rented for in 1810, without his 
business being bettered, or an increase in value to his house, 
with its constant liability to be burned down by this educated 
rabble, and if it is insured, to be swindled out of his policy- 
money by their upgrown patrons. 

If this honest mechanic happens to live, and work, and save, 
and buy two more such houses in twenty years, he will have 
to pay six hundred dollars for schooling the poor. 

It is upon this class of men that these burdens exclusively 
fall; they are the only persons who have taxable property; — 
politicians and corporation knaves hold nothing that can be 

This is another one of the plots by which rogues cheat honest 

They call it equality, humbling the rich, and breaking down 
the aristocracy. 

That is to say, the rabble has a right to extort from each 
laboring man from fifty to six hundred dollars a year, to school 
fifty thousand paupers every year in one county, ;ill of whom 


ought to be at work, and one hundred and fifty of whom are 
graduated in a college, which they are afraid to call by its true 
name, and, to hoodwink their fraud, call it a High School. 

Why limit this collegiate bounty to one hundred and fifty, 
out of fifty thousand? and why exclude the negroes altogether 
from it ? 

Equality, founded upon, and ratified by their poor-laws, de- 
mands that all and every person from five to twenty-one years 
of age shall have this boon. 

The despot who exacts tribute at the point of the bayonet 
is a refined benefactor compared to these hypocrites. 

He holds power and demands its support ; they repudiate 
force and fraud, whine about charity and benevolence, and in 
the name of equality, tax the people for the most gross and 
odious indulgences, subterfuges of oppression, and aristocracy. 

If these abuses come from persons in the plain and private 
conditions of life, they would not be tolerated ; but the force of 
adventitious circumstances, with persons in power and place, 
forces the unsophisticated and honest, who stay at home and 
mind their work, to submit to the despotism of these self-con- 
stituted arbitrators of " character" and public opinion. 

The practice is to concede that the good they do should be 
magnified, that the wrong done by them should be overlooked, 
and that their disapprobation of or sneers at anything is suf- 
ficient to render it unpopular. 

"Diseases of continuance get an adventitious strength by 
custom." — Bacon. 

The combination and prevalence of these pernicious tenden- 
cies embarrass the minds and multiply the mental calamities 
of all honest men. 

They are examples of the abuses which have been success- 
fully practiced by the malicious, selfish, ignorant, and vapid 
rabble ever since the first woman impudently deserted the or- 
dained fellowship and protection of her husband, and privately 
promenaded through voluptuous shades and forbidden gardens, 
secretly intending to throw herself in the way of, and to be 
picked up by, the father of all cunning and deception, to indulge 
in a wanton intrigue, which GOD had warned her to avoid un- 
der penalty of death. 

Here began envy, jealousy, slander, backbiting, and treach- 
ery, and a perpetual and promiscuous struggle for ascendency, 
domination, and sway. 

424 TUBLIC OPINION, CHARACTER, and dueling. 

All efforts have, ever since then, been employed, by the ar- 
rogance and fraud of the base and selfish, individually and 
collectively, to mar the prospects, blight the hopes, blast the 
characters, and crush the hearts of the pure and honest. 

And, however conscious we may be of the contempt and 
scorn in which "public opinion," and "what people say," and 
" what (he world thinks," should be held, yet there are few who 
are not frightened and dismayed by it. 

Very few who have discernment and discrimination sufficient 
to detect its hollow and cruel deceptions, or moral courage 
enough to shake loose from, and resent and resist, its frigid 

We involuntarily permit its baleful influences to penetrate 
into and pervade the hidden recesses of the heart, and control, 
influence, govern, and torture, all its timid and secret sensa- 

Lady Flora Hastings, eldest daughter of Francis, Marquis 
of Hastings, was born in 1806. She was appointed lady of 
the bed-chamber to the Duchess of Kent, and while in this 
station, an enlargement of her liver excited rash suspicions of 
her virtue, to which the virgin heiress to the throne of Eng- 
land (afterwards Queen Victoria), keenly anxious for the cha- 
racter of her court, and misled by (her physician) Sir James 
Clarke's inexcusable misjudgment of the case, unhappily list- 

The deeply injured and discarded lady, eminent for beauty, 
accomplishment, talent, and piety, suffered under this slander 
but for a brief season in the public estimation, and died, amidst 
universal expressions of sympathy and mournful esteem, at 
Buckingham Palace, of a broken heart, July 15th, 1839. 

A post-mortem examination triumphantly refuted the cruel 
calumnies which shadowed the close of her pure and excellent 

An insurance company, puffed up with its aggregate vanity 
and pride, was called upon to pay an admitted loss by fire ot 
seven thousand dollars on its policy ; the insured was totally 
burned out, and ruined, crushed, and bewildered. 

The company told him he had fired his own store, and they 
could prove it ; would keep his action in court for years ; but 
would compromise for seven hundred dollars. 

The charge was utterly false; but he was terrified with the 


fear of public opinion, and the threat against his character, 
and cringed to the plunder. 

These are rich and fragrant banquets for experienced and 
retired rogues to feast upon — from four to ten per cent, half- 
yearly dividends ; own all the capital themselves, and revel on 
humbug and swindling. 

Another set got a charter for an insurance company on the 
mutual principle plan; profits to be divided among the in- 

They employed plausible pumpers to pump round through 
the city after the shopkeepers and mechanics, excite their fears 
of fire, show them how trifling the premium and cost of insur- 
ance was, read over to them the big names of the officers and 
managers of the company, leave a card with beautiful pictures 
on it of half-naked women and babies rushing from flames, 
and pompous statements of capital, security, and dividends ; 
call again; show them a printed policy with large figures 
of $500,000 capital, and charter perpetual on it, and with ano- 
ther blazing picture of a city in flames on it ; coax them to 
sign an application for insurance, squeeze out the costs and 
premium, and then bring back to them the policy, signed and 
sealed with an enormous seal, with engines and other ridiculous 
catch-penny devices on it; and tell the stupid, gull-trapped 
dunce that now he is safe, and can sleep sound. 

These plausible villainies are practiced by hundreds of these 
swindling institutions, at the head of which are names supposed 
by beginners, young persons, and strangers to be the pillars of 
the world. 

One of these rotten conspiracies spread abroad their fraudu- 
lent perpetrations, until its dignified president and crafty secre- 
tary, with their gorgeous buildings paved with mosaic marble, 
decorated with costly statues, and paintings, and gilded furni- 
ture, beguiled the public into the belief that they had un- 
bounded wealth and benevolence. 

At length one of their infatuated victims had his shop burned 
out. He applied to the secretary for an amicable adjustment 
of his loss according to the printed schedule attached to his 
policy; to'which he received an insolent and haughty insinua- 
tion that he had set fire to his store to cheat the company. 

Indignant at this base imputation, he brought an action on 
his policy, upon which a bill of discovery was filed, upon the 
oaths of this president and secretary, in which this charge was 



repeated. The defendant traversed the perjury on oath, and, 
after much baffling, the case was tried, every inch of ground 
being contested by the hired pettifogger of the company. A 
bill of exceptions was taken, and a new trial demanded ; and, 
after a delay of more than three years, a judgment was ob- 
tained. An execution was issued ; the company denied owner- 
ship of its magnificent office, and of all other property. 

The plaintiff now filed his bill of discovery, to which these 
pompous and fashionable patriarchs of benevolence, and proud 
arbitrators of public opinion, audaciously and respectively made 
oath, as follows : 

The president said that he owned the office, and built it ex- 
pressly for the munificence nominated in the act of incor- 
poration. That the project was got up by the secretary and 
his personal friends. That, when the company obtained their 
charter, it was conditioned that he should permit his name to 
be used as the presiding officer; but that he had no knowledge 
of the transactions, except to write his name, when requested 
by the secretary, who had paid him the amount of interest agreed 
upon for the investment made in the erection of the building. 

The secretary answered by attaching a copy of the act in- 
corporating the company, which, he said, would show that the 
company had been established upon the " mutual principle." 
That of course it had no capital stock. That he had borrowed 
the names of the president and the board of managers, who 
had never met. That he had also loaned a substitute, when 
a member of the board died. That he had prosecuted for 
more than nineteen years a popular and prosperous business, 
and had received unexpected and surprising patronage, and in- 
credibly large sums of money in premiums and charges, which 
had been faithfully disbursed in office-rent, lawyers' fees, ex- 
cursions, presents, and hot suppers for his patrons ; and that, 
measuring his own services, which he said were unremitted, 
and exclusively devoted to the benevolent objects of this beauti- 
ful experiment of reciprocal loss and gain, by its pecuniary 
productions, he had regulated his salary by this reasonable and 
just tariff of equitable remuneration, by appropriating the 
annual residue to that desirable and laudable object. 

The eloquent secretary proceeded to make further answers, 
and said that he submitted with his answers a list of the names 
of the insured, a statement of the losses, and he humbly sub- 
mitted that the insured were liable to the sufferers: that is, 


they were liable to each other for the losses under the " mutual 
principle" recognized by the charter. That he had carefully 
set out in a statement, also attached the pro rata proportions of 
the ratio of each of the insured, and had sent them a demand 
for their respective mutual liabilities with his commissions, add- 
ed that he was under no security, and that he had been ad- 
vised by his three solicitors and his board of managers that, 
unless these delinquents paid up, their understanding was that 
the company would have to stop, as its popularity with the 
public would now perhaps be so much suspended as to diminish 
the revenue required for its " mutual" support. 

Then ensued an eruption more terrible than all the conflagra- 
tions of the sufferers. 

A town meeting, the universal remedy of all. infatuated and 
ignorant, self-sufficient, hoodwinked blockheads, was convened. 

Loud and boisterous harangues, and indignant fulminations 
of fraud and robbery, were expectorated upon these denounced 
and hoary-headed pompous dictators of fashion and public 

A committee of thirteen (old '76) was appointed, with in- 
structions to indict and chase the ruffians down to the peniten- 
tiary for life, and, if possible, to get the legislature to pass a 
law to have them all hanged. 

The committee never met, and within two years these cun- 
ning thieves were scattered about in the catalogues cf the names 
of the directors of new and similar institutions. 

Is it wonderful that even these barefaced contrivances for 
public robbery, when organized and sanctioned by legislative 
authority, should fail to work out and spread abroad so much 
deception and fraud ? and that their victims should involun- 
tarily bend to the force, and yield to the fear of the " public 
opinion" which these pernicious elements of fraud and wicked- 
ness generate and control, when they hold by their fascinating 
influences, as it would seem, a stupid world in a voluntary trance ? 

A fashionable and pompous operator in fancies, who lounged 
at clubs, and lived in grandeur, carelessly, as it were, to pa- 
tronize a poor beginner, who had a wife and a family of chil- 
dren, ordered home to his princely mansion a $400 piano forte, 
for cash. After being dunned for three weeks, gave his post- 
dated check upon a bank where he had no account; then 
his note, which was protested; and, after a year, an order to 
the owner for bis piano, wbich was refused. Flushed with 


brandy, after a five o'clock dinner, he drove down the avenue 
in front of, and stalked into the piano man's shop, with his 
gay and dashing daughter, denounced him as an impudent 
scoundrel for insulting his daughter's refinements about a con- 
temptible $400 piano, and proclaimed that he would procure 
him to be denounced as odious, mean, and vulgar, and his pianos 
to be badly made and false-tuned. 

Under the presumptuous pretext of fashionable dignity, the 
ruffian prevailed, but in reality it was the open audacity of the 

The piano-maker was frightened at the menace against his 
" character" as an honest dealer, which he considered worth 
more than $400, and handed over the check, note, and order, 
to this fashionable robber. 

Oh man ! thou slave to " the opinion of the world," and to 
" what people say," rebuke, if you will, this honest artist, beset 
in a wilderness by savages ! But thousands of you, thus hedged 
in by villainy, will crouch as he did. 

Few have nerves strong enough to stand the brunt of "pub- 
lic opinion," even though they know and see that it is estab- 
lished by rogues and knaves. 

These are a few of the instances in which the fear of defa- 
mation, and the dread of public opinion, have crushed its inno- 
cent and suffering victim. 

The skill of the educated and depraved rabble, who arbi- 
trarily establish " public opinion," is not more successful in its 
brutal sway than it is dextrous in contriving plausible excuses 
for its perpetrations. 

It is wholly indifferent to them what the degrading and infa- 
mous character of the coveted indulgence is; they will be as 
successful in establishing its popularity as they are triumphant 
in its consummation. 

By their consummate faculties of dissimulation, they will 
soon enlist the sympathies of the masses, the weak and the 
wicked, for the public and fashionable sanction for unblushing 
drunkenness, gluttony, idleness, cheating, embezzling, stealing, 
forgery, perjury; gambling in stocks, monopolies, corporations, 
at elections, clubs, horse-races, gaming tables ; suborning and 
corrupting witnesses, jurors, judges, legislators, executives; and 
in arson, mobbing, and assassination. 

When a poor man, out of the pale of this fashionable sphere, 
attempts a participation in the.'jc luxuries, he is crushed without 


remorse. It is difficult which most to abhor — the infamous pro- 
fanities of making and establishing " public opinion," or the 
brutal perpetrations it sanctions. 

The following is a specimen of their artful depravities. It 
recites some of their excuses for fashionable murder by duel- 

They say that, when men are smarting under severe wrongs, 
they become impatient and restive. That they will not be forced 
into the courts and submit to the tedious, and, as they think, 
the inadequate redress there given. That their passions cannot 
be curbed, and that the rigid rules of the law must be by all 
good men relaxed for them, or anarchy must follow. They 
hold that common justice demands that a compromise should 
be made for cases fraught with trying provocations. 

They ask what, then, is to be the remedy, if men shall be 
tolerated in redressing themselves by revenge, by mobbing, and 
assassination ? or by the slow and fatal retribution suggested 
and stimulated by the dark impulses of vengeance ? They 
admit that both are terrible and fraught with horror; that 
they are reciting wrongs which are held to be, and really ap- 
pear to be, without a legal remedy ; and, therefore, as it is so, 
that, in all cases where the law is not relied on and will not 
be resorted to, and men will have personal redress, it is best 
4 that it should be had upon equal and fair terms. 

They contend that in this dilemma, dueling is obviously to 
be preferred to secret and brutal violence. That both parties, 
upon a challenge to fight a duel, have opportunities for mutual 
explanations. That the occasion is exciting, and it may cool ar- 
dor, and throw them both back upon their consciences or their 
cowardice. That the exigencies of this perplexing crisis may 
check their impulses. That they may privately explain, recede, 
or apologize, without exposure or humiliation; and, if the 
party called out flunks by refusing to explain, apologize, or 
fight, that there the matter will end. 

They say that, if no intervention occurs to the meeting, the 
parties are then placed under the direction and control of 
their friends. That there should be, at least, two on each side. 
That they should be cautious and discreet men. That no man 
of true honor should refuse this office. That it is impossible 
to conceive how much evil he may avert, and how much good 
he may do. 

That the parties are now required and bound to disclose 


everything, even their secret motives, to their friends, and to 
remain silent. That everything is surrendered to the seconds. 
That the ordeal is solemn and searching. That the judges 
must listen and deliberate with caution, and determine with im- 

That ignorance of facts, mistakes, heat, haste, provocations, 
everything, must be carefully considered by them. That ex- 
planations, retractions, and apologies may be awarded, and 
that their decision must be implicitly submitted to by the par- 

That if one of the parties revolts he may be denounced ; and 
that, if no adjustment can be made and a conflict is unavoid- 
able, the parties are to be put upon an equal footing as to time, 
position, and weapons. 

That they must fight openly, in the presence and under the 
direction of their friends. 

That the first fire is but seldom fatal. That then comes a 
withering, crushing pause. 

The blood is chilled. The keen edge of resentment is wired. 
Perhaps the love of life and the pricks of conscience may 
come to both. 

That these results are apt to occur with the calm and de- 
liberate preparations for conflict; when the articles are read and 
signed, the parties meet, the distance is measured, and the 
weapons compared, prepared, and handed over. 

That these are stirring counter-excitements for the courage 
and conscience, and unmistakable tests of the true essence of 
real pride, honor, "character," self-esteem, vanity, and "pub- 
lic ojrinion." 

And that there are few instances in which this experiment 
upon the love of life and fear of death, from the challenge 
down to the first onset, does not so overcome the inherent, in- 
voluntary, nervous cowardice of human nature, as to provoke 
a pretext, however inconsistent with the vaunting arrogance 
and pride of the parties, for a mutual reconciliation. 

That, if the catastrophe is inevitable or fatal, the transaction 
has, at least, the show of having been unavoidable, the merit 
of fairness, order, and rule, and of imperious necessity. 

That, however revolting and fatal dueling may be, it spares 
the public eye, and supersedes secret revenge, mistakes, lynch- 
ing, fire, murder, riots, mobs, insurrection, open tumult, and 
breaches of the public peace. 


That, if there is any better substitute for redress for personal 
wrongs, between mobs and lynching, and the law, let it be 

They also say that open war between nations has been ever 
sanctioned by law and religion, and allege that there is no dis- 
tinction in principle between nations and individuals in this 

They say, too, that dueling has a marvelous tendency to 
level down the proud and haughty arrogance of man. 

That it is truly democratic and civilizing to big men ; that it 
puts the strong and the weak, the lofty and the humble, upon 
an equal footing; and deprives the bold and audacious of the 
power to oppress and trample upon the meek and timid. 

This is the absurd theory of the advocates for dueling, who 
are amongst the most respectable and distinguished members of 
society, and who everywhere covertly submit to, and thereby 
sanction, this erroneous and plausible, but pernicious code of 
false honor. 

Its leading features are recited here to show how the artful 
maxims of wickedness can invent arguments and contrive 
ichemes to delude the humble, to baffle virtue, and to substitute 
for morality and virtue the artificial and profane substitute of 
public opinion and fashion for every violation of law and religion. 

The plain and direct answer to all these equivocations and 
evasions, and open violations of law is that nothing dishonest 
3an be justified, and that no personal wrong will excuse duel- 
ing ; that no injustice or wrong can prosper ; and that, where 
human redress fails, it must all be left to Him whose wisdom 
and justice are unchanging and inscrutable. 

It is difficult which most to abhor: the infamous perpetra- 
tions of the rabble, or the audacity with which they despotically 
establish public opinion. 

Man's sensibility as to his reputation is as acute as woman's; 
he is more exposed than she is. 

Hence suicides to escape from the horrors of "public 
opinion;" and duels and assassinations in vindication of sup- 
posed or real wrongs. 

The causes of these fatal excitements are always overrated, 
and sometimes wholly imaginary, with those who deprecate 

One cause of this proceeds, sometimes, perhaps, from ■ the 
importance we give to ourselves, and the delusion under which 


we labor as to the supposed nature and character of our ex- 
istence ; we feel and act as if we were to live here forever, and 
vainly magnify the extent and importance of " character ;" 
whereas it is seen that our " character" is of neutral or second- 
ary consideration with one portion of the public, so long as we 
do not interfere with or trouble it; and that, as to the other 
portion, the dissolute and depraved part of the world, we are 
wholly in error if we expect that they will estimate our cha- 
racters by a just standard. 

They underrate character just in proportion as it is good, 
because in that ratio it blunts their secret pride and vanity. 

So that this enormous bug-bear called "public opinion" and 
11 character," that all the world fears and dreads so much, is 
an open transparent villainy, to be despised and abhorred ; but 
still it possesses the secret, mysterious, and demoniac power 
to benumb the judgment, to strike the soul with horrid spells, 
and scourge its earthly pilgrimage with fiendish pangs. 

While we deprecate these calamities on our own account, we 
should be careful to remember that we too take part in passing 
judgment upon "character;" and, as we value our own good 
name, so, for others, we are solemnly required to turn a deaf 
ear to all falsehood and prejudice. 

One of the most learned, impartial, and discriminating men 
that this country has produced prosecuted for more than twen- 
ty years the pleas of the people in the largest city in America, 
and he distinctly declares that, although indictments committed 
to his charge were all on oath, he was at last compelled to 
place no confidence in their truth; and that such was the au- 
dacity of falsehood, and the infinite purity of innocence, he 
often saw its bright lustre even through the dark clouds of 

The danger of a false conviction, even upon positive proof, 
when the defendant is helpless, and not of suspicious reputa- 
tion, or in bad company, is terrible. 

The numerous instances of the capital punishment of the 
innocent, upon positive, though sinister evidence, have drawn 
forth an able and interesting treatise upon the subject, by an 
experienced jurist, in which convictions and executions, upon 
presumptive evidence and perjury, are recorded with thrilling 

As to facts militating against others, within our own personal 
knowledge, we should not interfere, but mind our own business, 


unless they are crimes, or we arc in some other way required to 
notice them, and then we should hold our judgment subordi- 
nate to the wholesome rules of impartiality set forth in the fol- 
lowing recited decision. 

Character is a relative attribute. It is difficult to fix for it 
any distinct or positive standard. 

It is in this respect somewhat like modesty and manners, all 
of which are measured, dictated, and controlled, if not wholly 
governed, by fashion. 

The dress, for example, of the ladies at the royal drawing- 
rooms in London, is more delinquent, it is said, in the exposure 
of the bust and the arms than could be allowed to an undress 
in a private parlor ; and yet custom has for ages excused and 
sanctioned this apparent indelicacy with the pious and pure of 
both sexes. 

Personal familiarities, and apparent carelessness of speech 
and deportment between the sexes, are tolerated in some coun- 
tries, which would be held as coarse and vulgar in other coun- 

All these traits of character, if not in violation of the esta- 
blished rules prescribed by the virtuous portions of society, 
where they are practiced, may be overlooked as harmless and 

So, too, as to acts involving principles of morality. Man is 
imperfect, excitable, precipitate, thoughtless, impatient, impul- 
sive, and sometimes most sorely beset by temptations, withdut 
being radically prone to evil, and is therefore not always to be 
condemned for the commission of one or two crimes. 

The decision, then, proceeds as follows: — 

" If, upon the whole, the general tenor of his life exhibits a 
conformity to the rules of morality, he should be held as a man 
of good character. 

" It is the general import of his conduct, and not particular 
acts, by which he should be judged. 

" It will not do to take up the decalogue, and inquire whether 
a man is a liar, or is addicted to fornication, or adultery, or to 
profane swearing, or Sabbath-breaking, or if he covets his neigh- 
bor's goods, or his wife. 

" If an indulgence in these propensities were to be the stand- 
ard by which character is to be ascertained and determined, 
the standing of all men would be in peril. 

"There arc but few Catos, and perhaps the picture of his 


character better conforms to what the mind may regard as a 
beautiful model of morality than is consistent with the relations 
of any man's conduct through life. 

" This is not the standard which society has established for 
what is called good character; on the contrary, the law in this 
respect embraces, defends, and protects that middle class of men, 
all the world over, who have a sense of truth, honor, and vir- 
tue, and who are yet not above the infirmities of life, whose 
sensibility as to the value of character is sincere and consci- 
entious, but whose liability to err makes them vulnerable to 
the thousand wagging tongues of this world, whose shafts of 
slander, sometimes in sport, and sometimes in malice, make free 
with some department or quality of character of good men in 
the main. 

" If the law allowed these reports and this rule of decision to 
destroy character, few men would be safe. • 

" The truth is that it is only in general character that a man 
finds his true level in society, and that alone ought to mark his 

" It is a man's character in gross, and all taken together, his 
faults and his virtues, if he has any, and few but who have 
some, that form his individuality as to character, and which 
ought to determine for how much it is worth. 

" Even a man's relatives have some interest in his character; 
his parents, his wife, and his children are entitled to claim the 
advantage, and have preserved for them, whatever of soundness 
it retains. 

" And the hopes which we are taught to cherish for the future 
lean upon our general character, taking us all in all for sup- 
port." — (Judge Coulter, per curiam, in Stineman vs. McWil- 
liams, 6 Penna. State Reports, 175, A. D. 1847.) 

These are liberal and merciful views; the true interpreta- 
tion and practical application of which is, there must be more 
good than bad, and not that the good and the bad qualities of 
men are equal. 

So that, while the line is so generously drawn as to excuse a 
large amount of human imperfection and wicked indulgences, 
care should be taken not to encourage wolves in sheep's cloth- 

And it may be laid down as an inexorable law, from whose 
judgments there should be no reprieve or pardon, that all those 
who are outside of this line, which is abundantly merciful for 


sin and repentance, should be held and regarded as being under 
the specific and pervading dominion of incorrigible propensities 
and irreclaimable depravities, and at open war with all the ele- 
ments of peace, order, morals, and religion, and as wild beasts 
and venomous reptiles, to be shunned, and perpetually shut up, 
or extirpated from the face of the earth. 

This is an imperfect and transient glimpse at the panorama 
of man's deceptions, subtilty, hypocrisy, and fraud. 

It has never been suitably and sufficiently exposed, and it is 
said that for all these wrongs there is no legal remedy ; that is 
to say, that the law has furnished no action, or suit, or indict- 
ment, or other process, or proceeding by which they can be pre- 
vented, redressed, or punished ; and so it is. 

Every intelligent honest man, of patient judgment and self- 
control, must see, at every step of his life, that he is in a help- 
less minority, and that an attempt, by remonstrance, denuncia- 
tion, or war, to put down rogues and knaves, will inevitably bring 
upon him insult, hatred, and persecution. 

The world must be taken as it is ; we cannot reform or revo- 
lutionize it. We are compelled to work our passage through it 
the best way we can. 

There is nothing undergoes so many changes as man. 

To the old, this is not so obvious as it is to the young, to 
whom everything is new, for the transition of things being 
gradual, and almost imperceptible, like the attritions of time 
upon matter, become familiar to the old. 

1 But an intelligent and discriminating person at maturity will 
be so struck with the physical and moral changes between youth 
and age as to be almost baffled by the fact that they are in 
reality the same persons. 

Hence it is that what is pleasant and delightful at one period 
of life is disagreeable and repugnant at another time of life. 

This applies to all the appetites and mental appreciations. 

If these eccentricities are found with individuals, how much 
greater must be the disaffinities with the whole congregation of 
ages, habits, and prejudices. 

A calm and sober thought upon these complications admon- 
ishes us to infinite forbearance and precaution. 

The relative proportions of those with and without intellect 
and morals will be variously estimated. 

That is to say, what proportion of men are in mind above, 


and what proportion are below mediocrity; what the proportion 
is below this class; and what proportion they all bear to those 
merely above mediocrity, and those with the highest order of 

The same query lies as to the moral rank of the masses ; what 
portion are open marauders; those with like propensities who 
from cowardice and cupidity simulate honesty; and what pro- 
portion these bear to those who from conscience are truly honest. 

An analysis of this subject has not been publicly made by 
any author. It would probably be thought too bold by the 
cringing and cowardly. Besides, it is beyond the comprehen- 
sion of the majority, too humiliating for self-pride, and too 
odious in its comparisons for the popular rabble. 

Suppose it was announced, from undisputed authority, that 
the mental and moral propensities referred to furnished but 
ten out of every generation with exalted intellects, and that 
one moiety of the rest are but barely accountable moral agents; 
that one-half of the rest, that is one-fourth of the whole, are 
mentally inert, and are governed by their animal impulses 
alone ; and that the balance have no gifts above brutes, except 
the gift of speech. And suppose the same tariff, being applied 
to the moral propensities, showed that each generation produced 
but ten men with moral power sufficient to control their 
passions, and one-half of the rest are under the dominion of 
their evil propensities, and arc withheld from open violence by 
cupidity and cowardice alone ; that one-half of the remainder 
are open ruffians ; and that the residue arc fools, idiots, sturdy 
paupers, and malefactors ; what would the world think of this 
humiliating exposure ? And bating the transient influences of 
moral and religious constraint, it would perhaps be difficult to 
refute the veracity of this analysis. 

A few appropriate hints have been offered in these chapters 
upon this subject, and, however a full exposition of it may be 
held ungracious or illiberal, yet every prudent and independent 
man is not only authorized but required in self-defence most 
resolutely and thoroughly to understand it for himself. 

No better preliminary rule in this pursuit can be employed, 
perhaps, than to hold towards every one that we do not know 
the outward formalities of personal respect. 

This we are bound to do if we know nothing against them ; 
and at the same time we may privately watch them as if they 
were rogues. 


Instead of this being wrong, it is an act of sheer justice to 
thcrn and ourselves too, if they be dishonest ; if they are not so, 
it does them no harm, and it gives us the advantage of detect- 
ing their secret motives, if they can be scrutinized ; and thus 
protects us against them if they are dishonest, or it secures us 
against this contingency by the discovery of their integrity ; 
which last is a mutual advantage. 

To dismiss all distrust and caution, and to indulge in fami- 
liarity and confidence with strangers, is ignorant, humiliating, 
and dangerous. 

Self-defence and self-protection demand that we should keep 
guard, and always be on the alert as to those we do not know, 
and as to those we do unfavorably know ; and self-respect also 
requires that this necessary precaution should be expressed 
with delicacy and circumspection. 

To resent every affront, and to shun and avoid every one 
outside of the line of our own notions of propriety, will prevent 
and not facilitate our progress. 

We are not required to rebuke wrong, or vindicate right ; 
this is the province of government and law. But we are 
required to guard against the possible deceptions of every one. 

We have our own fortunes and safety to guard, and are not 
bound as individuals, by any injunction or penalty, to make 
ourselves obnoxious by opposition even to the worst men. 

Character, position, moral rank, and private worth, we have 
seen, are relative qualities, and must be estimated by an average 

So that, in this view, we are not required to eschew and 
avoid persons we privately hold to be beneath us. 

Because, according to the law, they have their right to pub- 
lic consideration, and, from motives of policy and self-interest, 
we should not slight or slur them, and thereby make them 
secret enemies. 

We cannot know too much of the sinister propensities and 
practices of this sordid world. 

Its deepest and darkest mysteries should be secretly and 
thoroughly penetrated. 

Every one about us, with all their connections, pursuits, and 
private objects, and propensities, should, by patient and search- 
ing scrutiny, be fully understood. 

We should abstain from gossip and scandal, and resolutely 

438 TUBLIC OPINION, CHARACTER, and dueling. 

maintain a profound silence, and affect an utter ignorance of 
what we do know about others. 

But the devices employed by them on us may be lawfully 
retaliated on them in self-preservation. 

If it be necessary for your interest or protection, do not hesi- 
tate to make in with the members and officers of their banks, 
monopolies, and all other cabals, factions, and conspiracies. 
They will be glad to profit by your countenance. 

They eagerly seek the company of respectable and thrifty 
men. It gives them a double chance to use and cbeat them at 
the same time. 

They are vain and venal, a little flattery pleases, and a favor, 
or a dollar, tickles their venality. 

In all their contracts, they pretend to be bashful, but are 
very ductile if alone, and for money may be used with unli- 
censed liberty. 

Take, for example, a political demagogue, a monopoly, or 
corporation Shylock, the leaders of factions, or any grog-shop 
and gambling judge; smooth in with, and praise their motives, 
and slick up their vanity, flatter their pride, and accommodate 
their sordid appetites, and they will betray each other, and 
fetch and carry like Indians. 

There is nothing wrong in this; it is defending yourself with 
the weapons of your adversaries, and preventing them from 
taking you by surprise. 

It does not follow that you are to be depraved, or to make 
a bad use of these participations, no more than this is to be im- 
puted to a doctor who has administered to an infamous disease, 
or a lawyer who has defended a murderer. 

The simplicity and want of tact and forecast exhibited by 
the cases just recited, of Lady Hastings, of the persons swindled 
by insurance frauds, and the piano-maker, contrasted with the 
proposed precautions, show how inevitably they must circum- 
vent tricks and fraud, if discreetly employed. 

If these victims of public opinion had studied and realized 
the detestable and hollow hypocrisy of the world, the first would 
have lifted her soul, with proud and conscientious scorn, above 
the power of professional ignorance and public prejudice, and 
patiently awaited the sure and speedy crisis of her triumphant 
vindication; aud the others would have at the outset evaded the 
toils of their adversaries; or, if unavoidably ensnared, they 
would have defied, indicted, exposed, and degraded the culprits, 


even if they had bribed themselves loose by "Jiaheas corpus," 
"quashing the indictment," " jury cannot agree," "new trial," 


During an evening session of the Roman Senate, Cicero in- 
formed it of the names of the persons present, and of all that 
was said and done, at a secret and treasonable meeting, then 
being held at Catiline's house, by him and his co-conspirators. 
Spies can telegraph too. 

Washington accepted an invitation to dine with a wealthy and 
distinguished Whig, at his splendid mansion near to the Ame- 
rican camp. 

While the joyful greetings upon his arrival were being ten- 
dered in the portico, the sharp eye of the host fell upon a troop 
of English dragoons, passing round a turn in the road, at full 
speed towards the house, and with great trepidation looked at 
his watch, and uttered an exclamation of surprise, and tremu- 
lously faltered the words, "jive minutes too soon;" upon which 
Washington placed his hand gently upon his shoulder, and 
complacently replied, " You need not be alarmed, sir; it is I, and 
not you, they are after." 

At that instant, the troop surrounded the house, Washing- 
ton leaped to his saddle, and the American dragoons, in En- 
glish disguise, dashed to the American camp with their prize. 

Five minutes afterwards, the British troop came ; but they 
fell into an ambuscade, with a general officer at their head, and 
were very soon arraigned with their detestable spy, before the 
marque of the continental commander. 

There is no difficulty in obtaining all this information. The 
world is full of gossips, tattlers, and bores; persons who re- 
joice in gathering up, and scattering scandal, hearing them- 
selves talk, and being listened to. 

You need not pump them ; a marvel or a wonder is all the 
encouragement they require; and even those of the sinister dupes, 
who are acute and wary, and secretly engaged in tricks and 
schemes upon their own account, are conscious of their moral 
inferiority, suspicious of detection, anxious to hold the favorable 
opinion, and obtain the views and knowledge, of respectable per- 
sons, and arc, therefore, ever anxious to court their society and 
countenance. They arc covertly after your secrets, to use you; 
so that, from the trembling fools always in your paths, and from 
the complacency of the very men you wish to pump and use, 
with the same caution and management by you, wherewith they 


delude, beguile, and swindle the world, you may secretly detect 
and forestall their plots, turn their capital to your own account, 
foil their schemes, and retaliate upon their frauds, without their 
knowing how it was done. When the financial crash of 1839 and 
'40 occurred, the best of the monopolies by embezzlements and 
frauds were minus more than one-half their capital, and got 
their stock reduced to meet this disaster; and all the rest were 
totally insolvent. 

After the explosion of the United States Bank, there was 
found, crumpled up amongst the rubbish in a closet, as has been 
already stated, a sheet of common letter-paper, on which was 
entered in pencil mark the initials of some of the officers and 
their favorites, to whom more than $20,000,000 had been 
loaned, on hypothecation, by a committee of this board to sun- 
dry persons on their notes with collaterals of West Feliciana, 
Vicksburg, and other moonshine scrip; and the sequel showed 
that more than the whole capital, $35,000,000, by these and 
similar causes had been swept away. 

It is doubtful if the debts of this bank will be paid, and it 
is now admitted that the stockholders will never get a dollar. 

Just in proportion to the magnitude of the objects of venal 
plunder, are the duplicity and art employed to attain them. 

For years before the eruption referred to occurred, the pomp 
and power of this institution so mysteriously pervaded the 
public mind, that acts of disgusting adulation were lavished 
upon its officers, those opposed to it were persecuted, and ex- 
pressions of doubt as to the integrity of its governors or the 
solvency of the bank would have exposed the publisher to the 
perils of being mobbed or lynched. 

Even after the exposure of the truth, such were the morbid 
sympathy and sordid influences employed, that the publication 
of the evidence given upon the efforts made to bring them to 
justice, was wholly suppressed, and they all escaped through 
the rotten meshes of the law. Such is the marvelous and 
superficial delusion and the mysterious and successful accom- 
plishments of fashionable and ostentatious rogues. 

Mix not with them, except to find them out; to expose and 
prosecute them is waste of time, and dangerous. 

Use them, to know and guard against their frauds, but put 
nothing in their power, for it will be embezzled or stolen. 

The utility of all banks, insurance and savings compani< 
doubtful. The ostensible idea is that they accommodate the 


poor with the use of the money of the rich, lighten the bur- 
den of individual losses by flood and fire out of the small con- 
tributions of the many, and providently keep and invest the 
earnings of the ignorant and helpless. 

Nothing can be so plausible as these benevolent plans for 
equalizing the condition of man, and nothing so replete with 
deception, or so liable to be perverted to the purposes of dupli- 
city and fraud. 

The poor arc generally deluded into extravagance by rely- 
ing on moneyed facilities, instead of their own safe and patient 

Insuring is like faro; the fact is that the profits will exceed 
the loss, or the dealer and the banker would not sit down to 
their table. 

Mutual insurance, without capital, rests upon the same specu- 
lation, or it would not be begun, and money savings shops 
presuppose the impudent sophism of the ignorance and stupidity 
of the depositors, which is as false on one side as it is cowardly 
and servile on the other, for there never was a human being 
who had industry to make a dollar that had not sagacity to 
save it as well as a corporation, who, however honest, out of its 
interests and profits will take good care to pay its rent and 

So that the real advantages are not only doubtful, but so it 
is that they are always used for fraud and swindling ; and all 
honest men, unless they are indubitably certain that they are 
under the management of those who are pure and discreet, 
should utterly refuse to touch their stock, and by every act of 
discountenance, discredit and repudiate them. 

If respectable men will properly use and exert their influence, 
by frowning down these insolent and audacious usurpers of 
public opinion, they can themselves obtain and hold dominion 
over the popular will. 

By these pious frauds, these private and lawful preparations 
for self-defence, these deadly weapons carefully concealed, with 
the eyes wide awake, but not too wide open, you may glide past 
these artful rogues, using them yourself, and not being used by 

As I walked by myself, I talked to myself, 

And myself it said unto me, 
Beware of thyself, take care of thyself, 

For nobody cares for thee. 



Sources of despotic governments — Nobility — The multitude — Ambition — 
Montesquieu — Office — Free governments — The poor and rich — The 
sword — Cost of twenty years' war in Europe — Of people to govern them- 
selves — Liberty — Congress — Rome — Tribunes — Veto power — Revolu- 
tion — People of the United States — Vigilance — Danger — Union — Frater- 
nity — Apathy of the people — Excitement — Inconsistency — Query, if 
monopolies in free governments do not defraud the people as much as 
privileged orders do in arbitrary governments — Can any form of govern- 
ment guard against private and public abuses ? — Veto power — Occasion 
for vigilance — Extracts, &c. 

Familiarity with guilt benumbs the conscience and en- 
courages the heart to persevere in wickedness, but it can fur- 
nish no excuse or palliation for it ; on the contrary, it requires 
the constant perpetration of other crimes to justify, conceal, and 
maintain the first sin. 

One crime necessarily provokes, excites, and requires another, 
until the mind is wholly engrossed in shifts and subterfuges for 
the practice of fraud and violence. 

The first unlawful grant of land, and creation of privilege 
by title or franchise, for the exclusive advantage of the few, 
at the expense of the rest of the people, was an act of unau- 
thorized violence ; and its continuance, under the penalties of 
insurrection and treason for resistance, is an aggravation, as it 
is an hourly repetition of the original fraud. 

No people ever consented to these usurpations upon their 
rights no more than they have consented to be slaves. 

They will no sooner surrender a part of their rights than 
they will voluntarily agree to part with them all. 

Whenever this invasion has been perpetrated, it has been 
accomplished by the despotic power of the sword, and the people 
have been compelled to submit to it. 

Whether this arbitrary force covers a part or the whole, the 
principle is the same. The military chieftain and the ruthless 
demagogue, who would rob the people of their rights, by or- 


daining special privileges, and seizing the public lands for 
themselves and their minions ; and the ruffian who captures and 
sells his fellow-man into bondage, are alike guilty of robbery 
and treason. And the audacious miscreant who holds these 
hellish spoils by purchase or by succession stands upon the 
same degraded footing with the first cutthroat and kidnapper; 
one has been stimulated perhaps by ambition, ignorance, ava- 
rice, and lust of power — excuses too mean for the sordid dealer 
or the hereditary footpad. 

There is no sanction of law or religion, wealth, rank, or 
power, that can mitigate these burning wrongs ; and just in 
proportion to their duration will be the remorse and retribution 
of those who moisten their hands or stain their consciences 
with the sweat or the blood of their fellow-man. 

It was this lust for dominion, injustice, and cruelty, which 
stimulated the revolt of Lucifer; and his doom will fall 
upon the heads of those who perpetrated his perfidious rebel- 
lion against the holy laws and equal rights of all God's crea- 

There is a downright absurdity in the toleration of despotic 
or aristocratic governments. All the arguments and theories 
in their favor are infamous deceptions and scandalous frauds. 
They are nowhere, or under any circumstances, required. The 
reason why they have been tolerated is that the honest people 
prefer their private pursuits to public affairs, and thereby give 
rogues an opportunity to usurp their rights. And when these 
usurpers obtain dominion, they plunge the people into igno- 
rance and brutal servility, and keep them there by force. 


" The meaner sort are too credulous, and led with blind zeal, 
blind obedience, to prosecute and maintain whatsoever their sot- 
tish leaders shall propose ; what they in pride and singularity, 
revenge, vain glory, ambition, spleen, for gain, shall rashly main- 
tain and broach, their disciples make a matter of conscience, of 
hell and damnation, if they do it not; and will rather forsake 
wives, children, house, and home, lands, goods, fortunes, life 
itself, than omit or abjure the least title of it; and to advance 
the common cause, undergo any miseries, turn traitors, assas- 
sinate, pseudo-martyrs, with full assurance of reward in that 
other world— that thev shall certainly merit by it, win heaven, 
be canonized for saints."— Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, 
p. G55. 


Arbitrary governments cannot be pi-eferred on the score of 
economy, justice, or morals; on the contrary, they have ever 
been distinguished for fraud, injustice, and prodigality: nor for 
internal security, or external protection; for assassinations and 
insurrections have most prevailed when the people have had 
the least to do with government. 

Napoleon and Louis Philippe were constantly beset by con- 
spiracies and rebellions. 

In the French Revolution of 1848, the government had but 
twelve rounds of cartridge to defend the throne. 

Whether this insurrection was a mob, or whether it was 
right or wrong, it boots not, for it would have been the same 
if a sudden descent by a foreign army had been made upon 
their capital. 

If people will burn or tear down here, and there is no arm 
to stop them, it takes nothing from the argument, for it 
never was better with kings or emperors. They have always 
been more helpless in times of popular commotion than free 

Nor do these stringent governments elevate the condition of 
men by the diffusion of knowledge, reward of industry, and 
encouragement of genius; on the contrary, they deceive the 
ignorant, oppress and burthen the pursuits of labor, neglect 
learning, betray virtue, and sneer at and persecute honest in- 
dustry, and moral and mental worth. 

Their policy is to degrade man and his lawful pursuits. And 
the social and moral condition of men has always sunk and de- 
generated just in proportion as their power has prevailed. 

Such rulers are distinguished for laziness, ignorance, prodi- 
gality, and injustice. 

No prince or nobleman, of the thousands who have lived in 
this nineteenth century, has written a choice and sterling book, 
or invented an improvement in tactics, science, law, mechanics, 
chemistry, agriculture, or steam; or developed a new thought 
in poetry, music, or metaphysics. 

They have held undisturbed dominion over the moral and 
physical energies of millions, without an effort to enlarge the 
sphere of their usefulness. 

No work of philanthropy or amelioration; no dissolution of 
feudal fetters and monopoly of lands; no release of the poor 
vassals; no deliverance from the dark and iron bondage of 


ignorance, has been vouchsafed to man by these anointed vice- 
regents. But their accursed lives have been dedicated to the 
hellish work of crushing the spirit, and enslaving the souls and 
bodies, of their suffering and oppressed race. 

In what is called civilized Europe, which is less than one- 
fourth part of the area of the world, there are two hundred 
and fifty millions : one-fourth of the whole population of the 
entire globe. 

It contains sixty-six governments, twenty-one kingdoms, and 
thirty -two duchies, nineteen of which owe more than ten thou- 
sand million dollars. 

England alone owed, on the 1st of January, 1848, 3,000 
millions of dollars. 

One of these kings " is a rowdy, and spends all his time 
with his dog and his gun." 

Another, old Bernadotte, of Sweden, a French soldier, 
reigned from 1809 to 1842, a period of thirty-three years, and 
died at eighty, without ever having known one word of the 
Swedish language. 

The King of Bavaria said to a gentleman of Philadelphia, 
in 1847, " yes! Pennsylvania is one of the Slave States: 
there are a great many slaves there." And upon being told 
that there had not been a slave there for forty years, he re- 
plied : " yes, I dare say ; yes, now I remember it very well!" 

Several of these sovereigns are ignorant, frivolous, and licen- 
tious females. 

Of all these sixty-six emperors, kings, and dukes, including 
all the queens, princesses, and noblemen by whom they are 
surrounded, there has been no one of them, male or female, 
within the last fifty years, who has ploughed an acre of ground, 
reaped one sheaf of wheat, woven one yard of cloth, made a 
loaf of bread, written a book that has been read, or composed a 
song or a bar of music that has been sung. 

A more listless, stupid, ignorant, debauched race of beings 
than these spent-out, idiotic miscreants has never existed. 

A fair sample of their chaste and royal aspirations has re- 
cently been discovered by the ripped-open closets of the Louvre. 

The studied, obscene, and impatient projects for premature 
virility and incestuous propagation, disclosed by the written cor- 
respondence of the " Citizen King" of France to his own 
daughter, would for ever blast the name of a slave-driver or a 


Montesquieu, in his "Spirit of Laws," vol. i. p. 25, says: 
" I venture to affirm that in a monarchy it is extremely difficult 
for the people to be virtuous. 

"Let us compare what the historians of all ages have asserted 
concerning the courts of monarchs ; let us recollect the conver- 
sation and sentiments of people of all countries in respect to 
the wretched character of courtiers; and we shall find that these 
are not airy speculations, but truths confirmed by a sad and 
melancholy experience. 

" Ambition in idleness, meanness mixed with pride, a desire 
of riches without industry, aversion to truth, flattery, perfidy, 
violation of engagements, contempt of civil duties, fear of the 
prince's virtue, hope from his weakness, but, above all, a per- 
petual ridicule cast upon virtue, are, I think, the characteristics 
by which most courtiers in all ages and countries have been 
constantly distinguished. 

"Now it is exceedingly difficult for the leading men of the 
nation to be knaves, and the inferior sort to be honest ; for the 
former to be cheats, and the latter to rest satisfied with being 
only dupes. 

" But, if there should chance to be some unlucky honest man 
among the people, Cardinal Richelieu, in his political testament, 
seems to hint that a prince should take care not to employ him, 
or to employ men of mean extraction, for they are too rigid and 

" So true is it that virtue is not the spring of monarchical 

There is no irresponsibility to the people, no concealment 
from the public, no pomp or show, no assumptions of sanctified 
power, divine right, or holy unction, that can longer blind and 
delude the people upon this subject. 

There is everywhere a broadcast prevalence of knowledge 
and good common sense that enables the world to appreciate 
the fact that the whole contrivance of hereditary and feudal 
aristocracy is an impudent plot; and that the people in future 
will be their own masters, and so organize their governments 
that the blood and waste time of these expensive revolutions 
shall be substituted for fixed periods for change, at which all 
delegated power shall return back to its original source, and 
new servants be appointed by the people, in their aggregate and 
primitive capacities. 

This first great practical guarantee and safeguard of a rcpub- 


lican government consists in having all officers, civil and judi- 
cial, from the highest to the lowest, elected directly by the peo- 
ple, for short terms, with a mere compensation, and an unyield- 
ing law of disqualification for a second term for the same office, 
and the power to veto out of office. There should not be, with 
any one, official patronage. 

The human heart is selfish. Few die, and none resign. The 
second taste for office is stronger than the first ; and the sophism 
is urged that experienced agents should not be disturbed. 

The officer soon fancies the office his own, and his constituents 
his slaves. 

Arrogance, oppression, and peculation obtain a footing which 
nothing can purge out or uproot but revolt or revolution, or the 
chastening and practical substitutes of democratic institutions. 

These express reservations should be engrafted upon the Con- 
stitution of the United States, and of every State in the Union, 
and they should be absolute and perpetual. 

Let those bent on and rabid for office rotate, if the people 
will suffer such vermin to abide in place; but never let them 
hold the same office twice. 

There would then be no truckling to incumbents, nor frauds 
by those in office to secure their re-election. 

No freeman should be required to obey any officer, or submit 
to any law put upon him by the arbitrary will of another, nor 
to acknowledge or obey any authority, but that which has been 
ordained and chosen by a majority of the whole community in 
which he lives, and where all have had an equal right and chance 
to vote. 

If the people are competent to choose their presidents and 
vice-presidents, governors, members of legislature, sheriffs, and 
aldermen, why are they not capable of selecting their senators, 
judges, and all other officers? 

There should be no government functionaries independent of 
the people. 

The creation and authority of officers who are independent of 
the people engender jealousy and distrust with the people, and 
resentment and defiance with the officers. 

The natural propensity with such officers is to place themselves 
above the people, and to use all their power to keep the people 
under them. They naturally become idle, dissolute, and oppres- 
sive, and impose upon the people labor, poverty, and extortion. 

The picture of a paternal monarch benignantly holding only 


the interests of his subjects in view, with a superior capacity to 
know their wants, and magnanimity to dispense even-handed 
justice, is a fictitious creation of the imagination. 

All men are alike in the sordid and sinister lust for sway and 
control; and just in proportion to their opportunities will they 
abuse power. 

Officers thus elected cannot screen themselves behind an ex- 
ecutive, or a life or hereditary commission. Nor will the people 
have occasion to fear their own appointees who hold power 
directly from their constituents, and with but a brief and limited 
tenure of office. 

The great evil with government is that the people are too apt 
to be dazzled with its parades and pageantry, and too prone to 
allow too much government, and that those in place never fail 
to take advantage of these public propensities. 

An honest and vigilant police, competent and just judges, and 
impartial jurymen, are pretty much all that is required in time 
of peace for civil government ; and in time of war ; a free people 
with good officers will do the rest. 

Presidents and governors should be plain old gentlemen, with- 
out any patronage; Congress should sit but three or four months 
every two years. 

The State legislators should meet but once in two years, and 
sit but two months. 

They should have no power to create corporations, grant privi- 
leges of any description, or borrow money; all these matters 
should be left to the people. They should hold their offices for 
a short term, and be ineligible to the same office again. 

To whom does this whole matter belong? Whose business 
is it but the people's? Who shall dare to dictate to the people, 
or say that one man who has been elected governor of a State 
can therefore better choose a judge for a county one or two 
hundred miles off, than the people of that county themselves ? 

The idea is ridiculous and false, and its indulgence has dis- 
closed, all over the United States, flagrant abuses of executive 
power, judicial arrogance, ignorance, and oppression. 

A judge should be elected for three or four years only, and 
ineligible to the same office for a second term. 

The people should have power to veto and turn out by ballot 
any of their officers, and elect others in their place at any an- 
nual election. 

Why not ? Are they afraid of popular anarchy ? Who 
dares to doubt the integrity of the people ? Have they not 


ruled here for sixty years in nearly all things directly ? and 
why not now make the system perfect ? 

The popular choice in all things is the true foundation of 
freedom, the political balance-wheel of all free governments. It 
secures the public peace and forbearance against abuse and 
oppression, because the people know that the incumbents are 
of their own choice, and that they will soon go out. 

This would stop strife and contention for office, encourage 
honest zeal for the public service, and put back and supersede 
the unfit. 

The whole scheme would then quietly and imperceptibly 
move on from year to year, as the feelings, the wants, the 
opinions, and the lives of men change and succeed each other. 

And why not ? Shall not man choose his home, his pursuits, 
and his altar ? 

And in all these abrogate or change, as his taste, his interest, 
his hopes, and his riper judgment may ordain ? 

He is made in God's image ; and may he not, with God's aid, 
do as he will? 

We are all born equal, and all governments were at first 

Shall one man with force set himself over another ? 

Has God permitted or ordered this ? 

Has man agreed to it? 

Man has never consented to, nor can he be arbitrarily ruled. 

Liberty is unalienable. All power is primarily with the 

Even despots acknowledge this primitive law of nature, and 
preface their installation to power by the infamous deception 
of a pretended election or suffrage, by a conspiracy of corrupt 
and perjured nobles or soldiers. And to magnify this detest- 
able fraud, they profanely arrogate Divine nomination, and 
with royal pomp and regal grandeur take what they impiously 
call the holy unction. 

Is a king imbued with more knowledge, or powers of search, 
or larger benevolence, than other men ? Is he immutable ? 
With faculties to adopt all things by rules of sure and exact 

What would be the burst of scorn by the people of the 
United States, if any of their presidents— even if he possessed 
all the virtues of the whole twelve they have had, without any 
of their foibles— had told the people that he held his office 



from above, and warned them not to profane his holy heri- 
tage from heaven ? 

Yet here, in this enlightened era of the world, in 1848, the 
King of Prussia arrogantly proclaimed to his subjects, who 
demand a free constitution — 

" I know that I am indebted to God only for my crown, and 
that I have a right to say, let him who touches it beware I" 

There is a singular evidence of this barbarous and malignant 
spirit of monarchical and aristocratic power in the wars which 
consumed the lives and the treasures of Europe from 1790 to 

Its disastrous consequences should warn the people of the 
United States against all wars except those which are essential 
for national defence and vindication. 

The illustration referred to is as follows : — 

" The net produce of twenty years of war : 

"French levies of June 24, 1791, 150,000 men; Sept. 

1792, 100,000; February 24, 1793, 300,000; April 16, 

1793, 30,000; requisition of August 16th, 1793, 1,050,000; 
conscriptions of 3 Vend, an VII., 190,000 ; 28 Germin, an 
VII., 150,000; 24 Messidor, an VII., 110,000; 28 Floreal, 
an X., 120,000; 5 Floreal, an XL, 120,000 ; ditto an XII., 
60,000; 8 Nivose, an XIII., 60,000; 27 Nivose, an XIII., 
60,000; 2 Vend, an XIV., 80,000; Dec. 15, 1806, 80,000 ; 
April 7, 1807, 80,000 ; Jan. 21, 1808, 80,000 ; Sept. 10, 

1808, 80,000; Sept. 12, 1808, 80,000 ; Jan. 1, 1807, 80,000; 
April 25, 1809, 40,000; Oct. 5, 1809, 36